MALABO, Equatorial Guinea, Nov. 18, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Africa aims to build a strong and permanent cooperation between the region and the Arab world, said Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, President of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea, today at the economic forum that opened the IV Africa-Arab World Summit. The summit is taking place in Malabo from 17-23 November, 2016. During his opening remarks, Obiang highlighted the cultural and political similarities the regions have and praised the progress and stability of the Gulf countries and how they serve as an example to African countries. He continued to discuss the developments Equatorial Guinea has made in recent years. "Since the beginning of oil exploitation, our economy has made significant progress, in the political and social sectors." Obiang highlighted Equatorial Guinea's economic development plan aimed at making it an emerging country by 2020. The country has achieved sustainable and diversified economic growth. "This plan not only benefits our country, but the Central African sub region, because it aims to boost the economic and social growth of Central Africa," he said. The economic forum also featured discussions of the role of transportation and logistics in promoting Africa-Arab trade and investment, strategic cooperation in the maritime transport industry, the establishment of joint investment in railway networks, and the role of financial institutions in supporting projects between the two regions. About Equatorial GuineaThe Republic of Equatorial Guinea ( República de Guinea Ecuatorial) is the only Spanish-speaking country in Africa, and one of the smallest nations on the continent. In the late-1990s, American companies helped discover the country's oil and natural gas resources, which only within the last five years began contributing to the global energy supply. Equatorial Guinea is now working to serve as a pillar of stability and security in its region of West Central Africa. The country hosted the 2014 and 2011 Summit of the African Union. For more information, visit http://www.guineaecuatorialpress.com.