Partnership with China will transform Sao Tome and Principe, says PM Patrice Trovoada

The prime minister of Sao Tome and Principe said he believes that cooperation and partnership with China will transform the country and bring many positive aspects for economic development.

Patrice Trovoada said in an interview with English-language Macao Magazine that by the end of April he will visit China to finalise bilateral agreements.

China and Sao Tome and Principe have re-established diplomatic relations in December 2016 and the archipelago was admitted as a member of Forum Macau this week.

Trovoada also considered that the accession of Sao Tome and Principe to Forum Macau allows the use of all the Chinese mechanisms that can support the economic development of the country.

“Forum Macau enables interaction with other countries and businesspeople from Portuguese-speaking countries and Macau. We must establish partnerships and join skills together to have a greater chance of success in what we do. So we look at Forum Macau with great interest as it is certainly one of the additions to what we need in terms of financial mobilisation and contacts for the country to grow,” said the head of the government of Sao Tome and Principe.

Trovoada recalled that the port and airport of Sao Tome and Principe are 6 kilometres away from each other, and that the government wants to build a highway connecting both facilities, which could allow the construction of warehouses and offices that can be further explored by Chinese companies to support their business, in particular to re-export products from there.

The prime minister of Sao Tome and Principe also mentioned unexplored sectors such as fisheries, which so far continue to be explored artisanally with an extensive territorial sea that the archipelago having huge potential.

“We also have sectors whose potential is confirmed, but in need of some support in terms of infrastructure to be able to grow much more, which is the case of tourism, which would see great development with an airport that allowed direct flights from source tourism markets such as Asia, America and even northern Europe,” he said.

The positioning of Sao Tome and Principe as a services and logistics platform could make it possible to take advantage of opportunities for the future development of the economy, said the Prime Minister, who noted that the geographical position of São Tomé and Principe to create infrastructure that make it possible to “grab” opportunities in logistics and air and airport services.

Trovoada also addressed the issue of existing offshore oil and gas exploration and said he believed that “the technology and price factor should lead us to be oil producers in the next 5-6 years.” (macauhub)