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Welcome To São Tomé and Príncipe
Country number
95
Selected MR Agencies

An Introduction to São Tomé and Príncipe

Officially the Democratic Republic of São Tomé and Príncipe, this Portuguese-speaking nation is made up of two volcanic islands located about 87 miles apart off the coast of Gabon. Named in honour of St Thomas by Portuguese explorers who arrived on the islands on his feast day in 1471, the islands had previously been uninhabited. The staple crop during the Portuguese occupation was sugar harvested by slaves. When sugar production slowed, slave trading increased. See full country profile.

Latest Research News from Africa

Sep 11
In London, on-demand panel and sample company Innovate has appointed former dataSpring exec Rie Nagai as Managing Director, EMEA. Sep 11 2017
Aug 29
Kantar has named Karin Du Chenne as CEO of Insights in South Africa; Stephany Brewer as Chief Client Officer of Insights in Africa and the Middle East; Noeraan Hendricks as Transformation Director; and Gisela Seeley as Country Leader for Kantar Media South Africa. Aug 29 2017


3 current African jobs:

Account Manager, Johannesburg, $ salary not stated - (posted Aug 23 2017)
Account Director - Qualitative, Johannesburg, $ salary not stated - (posted Aug 23 2017)
Client Service Director, Johannesburg, $ salary not stated - (posted Aug 23 2017)
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Fast Facts
Map of São Tomé and Príncipe
CAPITAL: São Tomé
GOVERNMENT: Republic
AREA: 964 sq km
POPULATION: 179,506 (July 2011 est.)
MAJOR LANGUAGE: Portuguese. Recognised Regional Languages: Forro, Angolar, Príncipense
Equator Beach, Sao Tome
Equator Beach, Sao Tome


Hot rocks The two islands sit on the Cameroon Line - a 1,000km long chain of volcanoes. São Tomé Island is in fact a massive shield volcano that rises from the floor of the Atlantic Ocean to 2,024m above sea level. Even the oldest rock on São Tomé is just 13 million years old, and the youngest is a mere 100,000. Príncipe is also a volcano, but activity stopped 15.7 million years ago.

As both the islands have always been isolated from the mainland, they both have many unique species of plants and animals - some peculiar to only one or other of the islands.

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São Tomé and Príncipe in Profile

Officially the Democratic Republic of São Tomé and Príncipe, this Portuguese-speaking nation is made up of two volcanic islands located about 87 miles apart off the coast of Gabon. Named in honour of St Thomas by Portuguese explorers who arrived on the islands on his feast day in 1471, the islands had previously been uninhabited. The staple crop during the Portuguese occupation was sugar harvested by slaves. When sugar production slowed, slave trading increased.

After gaining independence in 1974, So Tomé was one of the first African countries to adopt democratic reforms, leading to open, free and transparent elections in 1991.São Tomé is the smallest country in the world (in terms of population) that is not a former British Overseas Territory, United States Trusteeship or a European Microstate.

Some Business and General Info

GDP: $311 million (2010 est.)

Religions Catholic 70.3%, Evangelical 3.4%, New Apostolic 2%, Adventist 1.8%, other 3.1%, none 19.4% (2001 census)

Currency: Dobra (STD) - GBP 1 = STD 28,011

Telephone Code: +239

Research Industry

None.

Overview of Trade and Industry

Once-crucial cocoa production has declined due to drought and mismanagement. 2010 saw São Tomé export $13m worth of cocoa, copra, coffee and palm oil, mostly to the UK, the Netherlands and Belgium.

Imports worth $99m consisted of machinery, food and petrol and came most (56%) from Portugal. Generally, São Tomã and Príncipe has to import all fuels, most manufactured goods, consumer goods, and a substantial amount of food. Over the years, it has had difficulty servicing its external debt and has relied heavily on concessional aid and debt rescheduling.

Recent government programs have aimed to develop tourism infrastructure, and reduce price controls and subsidies. The country's territorial waters in the oil-rich Gulf of Guinea are being jointly developed in a 60-40 split with Nigeria, but any actual production is at least several years away.

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