Sao Tome and Principe: Libya wants to co-fund 2008 budget

30 April 2008

Sao Tome, Sao Tome and Principe, 30 April – Libya has offered to hand over US$5 million to Sao Tome and Principe to co-fund the country’s State Budget for the current year, the Sao Tome prime minister said Tuesday.

Patrice Trovoada made the statement on state television station TVS on summarising his recent tour of several African and European countries during which he went to Tripoli, Libya, at the invitation of his Libyan counterpart.

Libya’s willingness to co-fund the Sao Tome state budget comes after a Sao Tome diplomatic offensive in relation to its cooperation partners with a view to garnering financial support to re-launch the archipelago’s economy.

The Sao Tome state budget, which has estimated expenditure of US$86 million for this year, is due to be discussed in the country’s parliament for approval over the next few days.

As it has almost non-existent domestic production, Sao Tome and Principe’s state budget has been over 80-percent guaranteed by outside partners, both by providing loans and donations.

Nigeria and Equatorial Guinea, without giving a specific value, have also said they are available to co-fund Sao Tome’s state budget for the current economic year.

Along with Taiwan, which usually provides over US$10 million for the Sao Tome budget each year, the World Bank has also announced it will provide US$4 million.

Libya also showed interest in investing in the tourism sector in Sao Tome via a state company, particularly in construction of hotel units, as well as the fishing and telecommunications sectors. (macauhub)

MACAUHUB FRENCH