Legal Update/ Sao Tome e Principe: New Free Trade Zone Regime


Sao Tome e Principe has introduced changes to its Free Trade Zone (Zona Franca) Regime (Decree-Law no. 6/2021, of 5 March), according to legal database Legis-PALOP + TL:

  • The land in which the free trade zone (FTZ) is located, as well as the remodeling and facilities connected to the zone, can be granted to the investor company by the State for a period of 50 years.
  • Exceptionally, the Government may authorize, by means of a Resolution of the Council of Ministers, the signing of concession contracts for a maximum period of 90 years whenever the investment project is considered of national interest and of fundamental importance for the socio-economic development and financial control of the country.
  • The promotion company may lease plots of land ready to be built, as well as constructions and finished buildings to companies operating under the FTZ regime.
  • The lease agreements entered into by the investor companies with companies operating under the FTZ may exceed the concession period, remaining in force, in case the concession is terminated to another investor company, or of its recovery by the State, insofar as the approved companies accept it.

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