Moving to Sao Tome and Principe

Country Guide

Country Guide: Sao Tome and Principe

Due to the current coronavirus/COVID-19 situation and restrictions in various countries, the below information may not be accurate. This pandemic is a fluid situation. Check with authorities for local laws and restrictions concerning movements.

Updated: November 22, 2016

Used Household Goods and Personal Effects

Documents required

  • Original AWB / OBL
  • Sao Tomean tax card (cartao de contribuinte) from the owner of the goods or their company /
  • organization
  • Copy of valid passport
  • Copy of residence permit
  • Original valued inventory list in Portuguese, dated, and signed (in Euros or USD)
  • Packing list in Portuguese or French / English
  • Letter of employment in Portuguese and stamped from the company or organization in Sao Tome
  • Original certificate of change of residence
  • Letter of exemption (returning citizens)
  • Diplomatic exemption stamped by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (diplomats)

Specific Information

  • Extra charges cannot be avoided (rent, demurrage) payable at destination.
Motor Vehicles

Documents Required

  • Car registration document
  • Attestation of not resale
  • Declaration of value
  • Copy of vehicle purchase invoice
  • Descriptive inventory of car
  • Diplomatic exemption or concession allowed by Customs authorities, if applicable

Specific Information

  • Full or partial suspension of taxes and duties for the period of stay.
    • Concession granted for 12 months, renewable, maximum 4 years.
    • At the end, definitive import with payment of remaining taxes and duties or re-export free of taxes and duties.
  • In all cases, payment of general Customs fees.
  • In all cases, payment of “taxa do porto” – 3% on CIF value.
  • Guarantee or bank guarantee.
    • The amount of security is the amount of Customs duties and charges incurred
  • Request for the concession.
  • Foreign company domiciled in Sao Tome are excluded from duty-free or duty-suspension arrangement.

Note: Contact local agent for more specific information.

Restricted/Dutiable Items

Note: Contact local agent for more specific information.

Prohibited Items
  • Drugs, narcotics, weapons, ammunitions, and explosives are prohibited
  • Distilled beverage as ether, wormwood, isopropyl alcohol, benzyl alcohol
  • Tobacco: 250 g / 200 cigarettes / 50 cigars
  • Alcohol: 1 L of spirits / 2 L of wine
  • Pharmaceutical products permitted in reasonable quantities
  • Perfume 50 ml – toilet water / eau de toilette 250 ml
  • Pornographic film, drawing, picture
  • Foodstuffs containing some saccharin
Consignment Instructions

Recommended: Contact the destination agent to ensure all requirements have been met prior to import, especially for differences regarding air / sea shipments.

Cultural and Other Information

CIA World Factbook Entry for Sao Tome and Principe

Wikipedia Entry for Sao Tome and Principe