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Mission in São Tomé and Principe

19 March 2010

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In the Republic of SÃO TOMÉ AND PRINCIPE, meetings of special importance, were with:

  • Dr. Cristina Diaz, Minister of the Environment and energy resources. The Minister explained that in terms of energy  the offer is exceeding demand. A national energy plan was approved in 1992, when they were purchased generators. However, this plan should be updated. Indeed, the energy problem is serious, the need is great but the network is not yet implemented, except in a small central area. In light of the shortcomings, the Minister added that the implementation projects of the power system are welcome. The government is launching a series of appels d'offres matter. You can also submit projects directly to the competent Ministry, which in the case of convenience enter into an agreement with the proposer. Finally, with regard to waste, there is a system of collection and storage but not disposal, it would therefore be interesting to develop a project focusing in particular on toxic waste.
  • Dr. José Luis Xavier Mendes, Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Jorge Alberto do Binfim Sacramento, Director General of Ministry of Commerce and Dr. Manuel Lopez, Director of Office of the Minister of Commerce, Industry & Tourism. Minister Mendez showed especially that the country's economy is dominated by agriculture with manufacturing and non-mechanized, in other words it is an agriculture base and not accompanied by any processing activities. Main products meal, corn oil, palm oil, beans, coffee, cocoa, etc.. In particular, cocoa is produced top quality chocolate and palm oil are derived foodstuffs and fuels.
    Dr. Jorge Bonfim, expert negotiations opened between the countries of Central Africa, said he was willing to make a point of reference in place, which ItalAfrica can count, in order to promote a kind of intermediary between Italian companies and authorities local ministry.
  • Dr. Benjamin Vera Cruz, Minister for Infrastructure, who said that 2010 is defined for the Republic of Sao Tome and Principe as an economic year, because in the budgets expected to approve there is a series of invitations to tender to finance the construction of public works and infrastructure.
    The Government is concerned to explore possible projects for the Airport, the Port of deep water and building popular and social, in fact for this purpose is available to allocate land to encourage foreign investment.
    In telecommunications network is extremely limited and can only cover the local needs, which is why short-launched a series of invitations to tender for the construction of BPS.
    The Minister also said that other tenders will be launched for the establishment of an urban area.


The workshop was held in Sao Tome at the Marlen Beach Hotel. The focus of the latter model has primarily focused on Italian tourism, presented by Dr. Valerio Sparano. Of particular importance was the intervention of the Secretary General of the Chamber of Commerce. He highlighted the legal and tax advisory services that the Chamber of Commerce offers businesses, as well as facilitate trade. He also claimed that the current program of the government of São Tomé, aims to transform the country into a service provider, especially on the tourism sector which is expected to grow quickly.
Still important were the information provided by the Secretary, or the costs to start a company which depend on the value of the investment. Soon it will set up a Guichet Unique (Counter) that will handle all the procedures necessary to establish a company: it is expected that through this door you can start a business in two days.

Achieved results

The mission was an opportunity to promote and present Italian companies participating institutions to Sao Tome and Principe and local entrepreneurs involved and highly interested in establishing business relations of cooperation and partnership.
Another interesting result was the signing of several Memoranda of Understanding between ItalAfrica and the Chamber of Commerce of Sao Tome and Principe. These arrangements are aimed at creating a network for exchange of information and especially the implementation of trade development of both countries.
Moreover, Italian businessmen have expressed at the end of the mission, their appreciation for the excellent organization and especially for the quality of the meetings that have contributed not only to know, two economic and cultural realities that start to increasingly become more important for the global economy, but also to gain greater security in the possibility of considering the exploration of an area that always inspires fear and insecurity.

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