Japan supports Sao Tome and Principe’s food imports

14 September 2007

Sao Tome, Sao Tome and Principe, 14 Sept – Japan has donated US$1.6 million to Sao Tome and Principe to support the archipelago in its imports, especially of food products, officials said in Sao Tome Thursday.

The donation from Japan is part of an agreement signed Tuesday between the Sao Tome government, represented by the minister for planning and finance, Maria Tebus, and a representative of the United Nations Development Program, which represents Japan in this donation process.

According to the document, the UNDP, which will be an intermediary in this process, will manage the fund according to the conditions imposed by the Japanese authorities and in line with the needs of the Sao Tome government.

Sources from the Ministry of Planning and Finance told Macauhub that the funding would be handed over to Sao Tome retailers in the form of repayable loans in order to boost imports of food products, which are considered of primary need to the country.

This is the second time Japan has provided a donation of this kind to Sao Tome and Principe, after a similar process in 1997.

The Sao Tome archipelago is currently undergoing a rice shortage, which is one of the staple foods in the Sao Tome diet.

As well as supporting the fishing sector by providing equipment, Japan has also provided food aid in the form of rice to Sao Tome and Principe in annual deliveries worth an estimated at some US$1.3 million. (macauhub)