Strategic positioning of Sao Tome and Principe
National flag
Basic InformationSão Tomé and Príncipe is an island country in the southeast of the Gulf of Guinea on the central western side of Africa, with an area of around 1,001 square kilometres. It is composed of 14 isles including São Tomé, Príncipe, Rolas, and Caroço. By the end of 2020, the population is about 219,000. The capital city São Tomé is the largest city of the country.
Investment Situation

In recent years, the government of São Tomé and Príncipe has taken pro-active measures to improve the investment environment, attract foreign investment, construct highways and other infrastructure and develop actively tourism and seek for offshore oil development, which have helped to maintain the economy in steady growth.


São Tomé and Príncipe is an agricultural country that produce cocoa and other cash crops, 51% of the population is engaged in agricultural production. The main cash crop is cocoa, dried coconuts, coffee and Palm oil. The unique geographical location, coupled with the beautiful natural landscape, provides São Tomé and Príncipe with rich tourism resources. At the same time, oil industry still in the initial stage of development, and the country has relatively rich forest, with biological and fishery resources. 


The “2021 World Investment Report” published by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), pointed out that by the end of 2020, São Tomé and Principe has attracted US$310 million on stock of inward direct investment. According to statistics from the Ministry of Commerce of China, by the end of 2020, the stock of direct investment of China in São Tomé and Principe was US$1.99 million.

Trade in Goods

In 2020, the main export destinations of São Tomé and Príncipe are the Netherlands, Belgium, Portugal and Germany, and the main export goods are cocoa, palm oil dried coconuts, coffee. The main origins for imports are Portugal, Angola, Togo and China. The main import goods are grain, fuel, industrial products, and consumer goods.


In 2020, the trade in goods between China and São Tomé and Príncipe were mainly dominated by Chinese exports. The main export goods were ships for processing and preserving fish products, machinery parts, steel, fuel oil, etc.; the goods China imports from Sao Tome and Principe are mainly mechanical parts.