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São Tomé, São Tomé and Príncipe

São Tomé and Príncipe

Validation status
Meaningful progress
22 February 2008
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Overview and role of the EITI

São Tomé and Príncipe has a nascent petroleum sector. The country is conducting oil exploration activities in two zones under different jurisdictions: the Joint Development Zone (JDZ) with Nigeria, and the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). While no significant oil discoveries have been made to date, the government is looking at how to make the zone more competitive and attract new investors to continue exploration.

The EITI is helping to inform dialogue on attracting investment to develop the EEZ and the JDZ and on managing these projects in line with international best practice. EITI reporting has provided a review of the oil sector’s legal, contractual and fiscal frameworks.

As the Government of São Tomé and Príncipe does not have the legal authority to enforce the full disclosure of information by the Joint Development Authority and by companies operating in the Joint Development Zone, the country implements the EITI under an adapted implementation approach.

In October 2022, the EITI Board decided to temporarily suspend São Tomé and Príncipe for stalled implementation. This suspension was further extended in April 2024. 

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Download open data on government and company revenues, revenues by revenue stream and indicator, summary data and more.

Innovations and policy reforms

  • EITI Reports have contributed to the monitoring of Joint Development Authority’s compliance with the Abuja Declaration on transparency. Efforts to systematically disclose extractives data online has resulted in the establishment of an online license register hosted by the petroleum regulator ANP-STP, as well as the publication of petroleum agreements on the Resource Contracts portal.
  • EITI Reports have ensured that information about oil companies’ social expenditures, transfers to and from the National Petroleum Account, licensing procedures and contracts are publicly available for the first time.

It is very important for us to give citizens reliable information to allow them to be an effective part in the participatory budget process.

Violeta de Herrera Mayor of Castilla municipal district (piloting regional EITI implementation)

Extractive sector data

Revenue collection

Level of detail 2

Revenue distribution

Standardised revenue types

Top paying companies


Extractive sector management

Licenses and contracts

The national petroleum agency, Agência Nacional do Petróleo (ANP), manages the licensing process on behalf of the government. ANP allocates petroleum rights through either a bidding process or direct negotiations. A register of all active oil and gas licenses is publicly available on the ANP website.

All petroleum contracts are disclosed on the Resource Contracts Portal in line with the Law 16/2009, which requires the disclosure of contracts.

Beneficial ownership

São Tomé and Príncipe does not have a legal framework mandating the disclosure of beneficial ownership data of extractive companies. However, the Multi-Stakeholder Group (MSG) has initiated discussions related to disclosure of beneficial owners of companies operating in both the Joint Development Zone (JDZ) and the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), and is considering requesting beneficial ownership information for forthcoming EITI Reports. Furthermore, the MSG plans to support comprehensive beneficial ownership with proposed for amendments to Petroleum Act and Companies Act. 

Revenue distribution

All revenues from oil exploration activities are deposited into the National Oil Account, from which up to 20% can be transferred to the state budget on an annual basis. In accordance with the contract between Nigeria and São Tomé and Príncipe, 40% of the revenues received by the Joint Development Authority from operators in the Joint Development Zone should be distributed to the Government of São Tomé and Príncipe, and 60% to the Government of Nigeria.

EITI implementation


EITI STP is administered by the STP Multi-Stakeholder Group (MSG). The MSG is hosted by the Ministry of Finance and chaired by Minister of Finance, Hon. Américo dos Ramos. It is comprised of representatives from government, industry and civil society.

EITI STP has a sub-committee in Nigeria EITI that coordinates EITI reporting in the Joint Development Zone.



São Tomé and Príncipe was found to have made meaningful progress in implementing the 2016 EITI Standard in July 2020, following its third Validation. São Tomé and Príncipe has fully addressed seven of the 10 corrective actions identified in its previous Validation. The next Validation is expected to commence in July 2022.


Latest Validation: 10 July 2020

Assessment of EITI requirements

  • Not met
  • Partly met
  • Mostly met
  • Fully met
  • Exceeded
Scorecard by requirement View more Assessment View more

Overall Progress

MSG oversight

1.1Government engagement

The government is fully, actively and effectively engaged in the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the EITI process. Government representatives are taking part in outreach and efforts to promote public debate. While there has been continued and consistent support expressed by the government, challenges remain with respect to obtaining data on the Joint Development Zone with Nigeria from the Joint Development Authorities.

1.2Company engagement

Companies with presence in the country are actively and effectively engaged in the EITI process. There has been a positive step to expand company representation on the multi-stakeholder group (MSG), but there are also limitations in engaging any companies within the Joint Development Zone. Companies can also be more proactive particularly in outreach and information dissemination for their constituency and with other stakeholder groups.

1.3Civil society engagement

The active involvement of some civil society organisations in São Tomé and Princípe EITI demonstrates that civil society are fully, actively and effectively engaged in the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the EITI process. There is however a continuing need for greater capacity and knowledge regarding the oil sector and transparency, as well as financial resources to support their operations.

1.4MSG governance

The MSG approved a revised ToR in 2017, defining the MSG’s roles and responsibilities in accordance with Requirement 1.4.b. The MSG has initiated a renewal of its membership, ensuring that all constituencies are adequately represented and qualified. Internal nominations procedures for selecting MSG representatives have been codified.

1.5Work plan

In accordance with requirement 1.5, the MSG approved an updated fully-costed work plan in October 2017. The objectives are in harmony with national priorities and outline plans for addressing capacity constraints that could form obstacles to EITI implementation. The work plan addresses the scope of EITI reporting.

Licenses and contracts

2.2License allocations

The 2016 – 2017 EITI Report provide information about the process for awarding and transferring licenses. Information about the recipients of licenses awarded and transferred in the period under review is available in the EITI Report and the ANP website. However, information about the process for awarding contract and transfers are not publicly available

2.3License register

Legal or practical barriers preventing the disclosure of application dates are not explained in the 2016-2017 EITI Report or in other publicly available sources, and there is no indication of the government attempting to record and disclose application dates following the second Validation. However, the MSG feedback on the Secretariat’s draft assessment includes ANP’s explanation of practical barriers to disclosures and a plan to overcome these.

2.4Policy on contract disclosure

Building on its clarification of the government’s policy on contract disclosure in previous EITI Reports, the MSG has worked with relevant stakeholders to publish all active oil and gas contracts, aside from the PSC for Block 2 concluded with Sinoangol, as encouraged by the EITI Standard.

2.1Legal framework

The 2014 EITI Report contains an overview of the legal framework and fiscal regime governing the extractive sector.

2.5Beneficial ownership

Not assessed

The multi-stakeholder group has initiated discussions related to disclosure of beneficial owners of companies operating in both the J Joint Development Zone and the Exclusive Economic Zone, and is considering to request beneficial ownership information in forthcoming EITI Reports. Disclosure of beneficial ownership is also an objective in the 2016 work plan.

2.6State participation

The 2014 EITI Report describes the participation of the government in production sharing agreements in the Exclusive Economic Zone and details this block-by block. The report explains that holdings are monitored by the National Petroleum Agency and sets out the terms of state participation. Until production, the company covers all costs. Accordingly, to date, state participation has not led to any revenues or costs.

Monitoring production

3.1Exploration data

The 2015 EITI Report provides an overview of the extractive industries in STP, including significant exploration activities in the EEZ. Gaps in coverage of activities in the JDZ are not assessed in terms of compliance with Requirement 3.1, given the Board’s prior approval of adapted implementation for the 2015 and 2016 EITI Reports.

3.2Production data

Not applicable

There is no production in the Exclusive Economic Zone and the Joint Development Zone. The requirement on production data is therefore not applicable to São Tomé and Princípe.

3.3Export data

Not applicable

There being no production, there are no exports from the Exclusive Economic Zone or the Joint Development Zone. The requirement on export data is therefore not applicable to São Tomé and Princípe.

Revenue collection

4.3Barter agreements

Not applicable

There is no evidence suggesting that infrastructure provisions and barter arrangements exist. The requirement on infrastructure provisions and barter arrangements is therefore not applicable to São Tomé and Princípe.

4.6Direct subnational payments

Not applicable

There are no provisions on direct subnational payments and no indication that extractive companies make payments to sub-national levels of government. The requirement on subnational direct payments is therefore not applicable to São Tomé and Principe.


The 2014 EITI Report presents revenue data by individual company and revenue stream, and revenue is also presented by individual government entity.

4.9Data quality

The 2016-2017 EITI Report documents the audit policies and practices of reporting entities and provides recommendations to address weaknesses. Compliance with MSG-agreed assurances is documented and discrepancies were investigated. The report does not include a clear statement from the IA on the comprehensiveness and reliability of reconciled financial data.


The multi-stakeholder group has agreed a clear definition of materiality and materiality thresholds for company and government reporting, and the rationale is documented. Revenue flows are mapped out and all payments by companies (and receipts by government) from the Exclusive Economic Zone are included in the report and there were no financial flows from the Joint Development Zone in 2014

4.2In-kind revenues

Not applicable

There is no production and thus no in-kind revenue collected by the government. The requirement on in-kind revenues is therefore not applicable to São Tomé and Princípe.

4.4Transportation revenues

Not applicable

There is no indication that revenues from the transportation of commodities would constitute one of the largest revenue streams. The requirement on transportation revenue is not applicable to São Tomé and Princípe.

4.5SOE transactions

Not applicable

There is no extractive sector state-owned enterprise in São Tomé and Princípe. The requirement on transactions between state-owned enterprises and government is therefore not applicable.

4.8Data timeliness

The 2014 EITI Report was published in October 2015, less than one year after the end of the financial year.

Revenue allocation

5.1Distribution of revenues

Extractive revenues that are not recorded in the budget and their relation to the national budget are explained in the 2015 EITI Report. The detailed description of off-budget revenues and the reconciliation of transfers from the national oil account to the budget demonstrates that STP has gone beyond Requirement 5.1.

5.2Subnational transfers

Not applicable

Sub-national transfers are disclosed in the 2014 EITI Report. The legal provision related to subnational transfers of oil revenues is referenced, and the revenue sharing formula explained. There is no explanation for how the revenues are shared among the municipalities. Discrepancies between calculated and actual transfers are disclosed. Subnational transfers since the establishment of the Exclusive Economic Zone are reported by year, as absolute figures, share of the state budget and share of oil revenues.

5.3Revenue management and expenditures

Not assessed

The report describes all income to the National Oil Account from the Joint Development Authority and companies in the Exclusive Economic Zone and transfers to the treasury since 2005, and reconciles the transfers from the Central Bank (National Oil Account) to the treasury for 2003-14. The report also documents whether transfers were in line with the law. The report also includes the annual budgets of the Joint Development Authority for 2003-2014, and the contributions to the budget made by companies and governments.

Socio-economic contribution

6.1Mandatory social expenditures

The 2015 EITI Report clearly distinguishes between mandatory and voluntary social expenditures. It discloses comprehensive information on mandatory social contributions by companies in accordance to the PSCs, disclosures of mandatory social expenditures by companies disaggregated by project, beneficiary and between cash and in-kind expenditures.

6.2Quasi-fiscal expenditures

Not applicable

The 2016 EITI Report describes the MSWG’s definition of quasi-fiscal expenditures (consistent with the EITI Standard’s), its assessment of their materiality and reporting of SOEs’ unilateral disclosures of material quasi-fiscal expenditures in 2016.

6.3Economic contribution

The 2014 EITI Report includes, in absolute and relative terms, the contribution of the extractive industries to government revenue, exports and employment. GDP and other general information on the economy are presented in the report, but the contribution of the oil sector is not mentioned. With no production this is likely to be negligible.

Outcomes and impact

7.2Data accessibility

Not assessed

EITI data is accessible, machine-readable and actively disseminated, both in print and summarised formats. There is no reference to national revenue classification systems or international standards in the EITI Reports.

7.4Outcomes and impact of implementation

The 2016 annual progress report has been made publicly available and provides a summary of the MSG’s follow-up on past EITI recommendations, as well as a narrative account of efforts to strengthen implementation and general observations on the impact of EITI implementation.

7.1Public debate

The MSG has sought to ensure the EITI Reports are comprehensible, written in a clear style and actively promoted. The reports include information of national relevance that goes beyond the EITI Requirements and provides facts for public debate on the management of oil revenue, social projects and the management of the Joint Development Zone. Media references to the findings of the EITI Reports have been relatively few but have clearly resulted from outreach activities by São Tomé and Princípe EITI.

7.3Follow up on recommendations

The 2016 annual progress report and 2015 EITI Report detail the MSG’s follow-up on recommendations of STP’s EITI Reports and Validation. The MSG has actively followed up on past recommendations and the 2017-18 work plan has been updated with specific objectives and activities related to follow-up on EITI recommendations.

Key documents