The export of cocoa in the first quarter of the year provided São Tomé and Principe with a revenue of 24.3 billion dobras (just over US$1 million), according to figures from the National Statistics Institute (INE) obtained by Macauhub in São Tomé.
The figures provided by INE show that revenue from cocoa sales, which accounted for 71.1% of all exports of agricultural products in the period, showed a 39.1% decrease in dobras (São Tomé’s currency) due to a drop in prices in foreign markets.
In terms of quantity, there was also a negative variation of 29.7%, with cocoa exports falling from 632 tonnes in the first quarter of 2016 to 432 tonnes in the first three months of 2017.
INE said that this drop in the amount exported was due to a decrease in production caused by “weather factors.”
The remaining 28.9% of the list of agricultural products exported from January to March of this year was mainly made up of flowers and plants.
The Satocoa Company, Cecab Cooperative, Agro-Comercial Agricon, Uba Budo and Belavista are among the list of the companies that export cocoa from São Tomé.
The main importers of agricultural products from São Tomé and Principe are Portugal, the Netherlands, Belgium and France.
The economy of São Tomé and Principe, where external aid covers more than 50% of public expenditure, is based mainly on agricultural exports, particularly cocoa, which contributes nearly 27% to the structure of GDP. (macauhub)