Government of São Tomé and Príncipe rescinds contract with Kenyan company for exploration of air space

5 August 2009

São Tomé, São Tomé and Príncipe, 5 Aug – The government of São Tomé and Príncipe has rescinded the contract for air space exploration signed in 2007 with AVC Consultants, based in Nairobi, Kenya, by mutual agreement, according to Empresa Nacional de Segurança Aérea (Enasa).

The concession contract between the government and AVC Consultants had been valid from 1 February 2008 until 31 January 2019, renewable for successive six-year periods.

The contract “obliges the concessionary company to invest US$2 million during the concessionary period” and establishes the distribution of revenue from the exploration of the archipelago’s air space as 95 percent for AVC and just 5 percent for the state of São Tomé.

“This is a contract which caused a great deal of controversy and this was the reason it was rescinded,” Aristides Barros, the director of Enasa, told Portuguese news agency Lusa, referring to the one-sided conditions obtained by the Kenyan company.

Under the terms of the contract, AVC Consultants were responsible for “supplying, with exclusive rights, air navigation support systems and air traffic services within the air space and around the airports” belonging to São Tomé and Príncipe.

The contract was signed by the Planning and Finance minister in 2007, Arlindo Afonso de Carvalho, but negotiations were carried out by the Infrastructures, Public Works, Transport and Communications minister Delfim Neves who, at the time, described the contract as “a goldmine” for the recovery of the Sao Tomean economy. (macauhub)