Most interior wholesale and retail trade has been maintained through factorías (small general agencies) managed by individual Spanish owners or the representatives of small firms. Most trade occurs in the major cities of Malabo and Bata.
Consumer price inflation has fluctuated quite a bit throughout the last decade with rates settling to about 6% in 2001. Recent economic policies are designed to encourage foreign investment.
Normal business hours are 8 AM to 12 noon and 4 to 8:00 PM , Monday through Friday, and 9 AM to 2 PM on Saturday. Spanish is the dominant business language, while French and English are also spoken.