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Oceans and fisheries

São Tomé and Principe

Sustainable fisheries partnership agreement with São Tomé and Principe

The fisheries partnership agreement between the EU and São Tomé and Príncipe was signed in 2007 and entered into force on 29.08.2011. The current protocol to the fisheries partnership agreement covers the period 19.12.2019 - 18.12.2024 with a financial contribution of €840,000 per year during 5 years, out of which a specific contribution of €440,000 is dedicated to the support of the fisheries policy of São Tomé and Príncipe.

This fisheries agreement allows EU vessels mainly from Spain, Portugal and France to fish in the São Tomé and Príncipe waters and is part of the tuna network fisheries agreements in West and Central Africa.

Main features of the SFPA

Duration of the agreement

4 years renewable, 29.08.2011-28.08.2015, tacitly renewed for additional periods of 4 years)

Duration of the protocol

5 years as of provisional application (19.12.2019 – 18.12.2024)

Provisional application


Nature of the SFPA

Tuna fishery agreement

Financial contribution

€840,000/year for 5 years, out of which €440,000 have been earmarked for the support of the São Tomé and Príncipe fisheries policy in order to promote sustainability in its waters.

Fee for ship owners

€70 per tonne caught. 


Seiners: €9,100 (ref catches: 130 t. No prorata temporis, the authorisations are granted for a one year period.

Longliners: €3,255 per year (ref catches: 46,5 t)

Other fees: €250 per year for observers ; 3500 € per year for support vessel – No prorata temporis. 

Reference tonnage

8 000 t./year

Fishing possibilities



Tuna seiners 16 12 - 28
Surface longliners 5 - 1 6



The first fisheries agreement concluded between the EU and São Tomé and Príncipe dates back to 1984.


Current legal framework

Fisheries partnership agreement : Adopted by Council Regulation (EC) No 894/2007 of 23.7.2007 (OJ L 205 of 7.8.2007)

Council decision (EU) 2019/2218 on the signing and provisional application of the protocol; the protocol was signed on 19 december 2019 (see date on p. 9 of the protocol)

Information on the date of signature of the protocol : see above 

Council Regulation (EU) No 2019/2219 allocating fishing opportunities

Council decision on the conclusion of the current protocol (OJ L 222, 10.7.2020)