Africa > São Tomé and Príncipe

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International Monetary Fund. African Dept.
This Selected Issues paper focuses on the prospects of growth in São Tomé and Príncipe (STP). This case study seeks explanations for STP’s relative under-performance and draws lessons for the future. It compares past economic developments in the islands and recommends policies that could most effectively foster future growth in STP. Country-specific characteristics as well as weak institutions contributed to STP’s relative underperformance since independence. Initial conditions, particularly regarding human capital and natural resources, contributed to STP’s relative underperformance, especially in the first decade after independence. Experience in the four island-states suggests that fiscal discipline, revenue mobilization, and a more active private sector, particularly in the tourism sector, may be key to tap STP’s growth potential. Fiscal discipline is needed to contain the fiscal deficit and bring the debt to a sustainable level. Continuing to strengthen public financial management, including implementing multiannual fiscal framework as recommended by the IMF technical assistance, would help.
International Monetary Fund. African Dept.
This paper discusses São Tomé and Príncipe’s 2018 Article IV Consultation, Fifth Review Under the Extended Credit Facility, Request for Waivers for Nonobservance of Performance Criteria, and Financing Assurances Review. São Tomé and Príncipe’s GDP growth in 2017 is estimated at about 4 percent, similar to the previous two years. Inflation spiked to 7.7 percent at end 2017, caused by unfavorable weather conditions and an increase in import taxes on selective goods. Fiscal consolidation continued albeit at a slower pace than expected. The macroeconomic outlook is positive. Growth is expected to remain at 4 percent in 2018 and to accelerate to 5 percent in the medium term as new externally-financed projects get under way.
International Monetary Fund. African Dept.

Abstract

The region is seeing a modest growth uptick, but this is not uniform and the medium-term outlook remains subdued. Growth is projected to rise to 3.4 percent in 2018, from 2.8 percent in 2017, on the back of improved global growth, higher commodity prices, and continued strong public spending. About ¾ of the countries in the region are predicted to experience faster growth. Beyond 2018, growth is expected to plateau below 4 percent, modestly above population growth, reflecting continued sluggishness in the oil-exporting countries and sustained growth in non-resource-intensive countries. A number of countries (Burundi, DRC, South Sudan, and parts of the Sahel) remain locked in internal conflict resulting in record levels of refugees and Internally Displaced Persons, with adverse spillovers to neighboring countries.

International Monetary Fund. African Dept.

Abstract

The region is seeing a modest growth uptick, but this is not uniform and the medium-term outlook remains subdued. Growth is projected to rise to 3? percent in 2018, from 2? percent in 2017, on the back of improved global growth, higher commodity prices, and continued strong public spending. About ¾ of the countries in the region are predicted to experience faster growth. Beyond 2018, growth is expected to plateau below 4 percent, modestly above population growth, reflecting continued sluggishness in the oil-exporting countries and sustained growth in non-resource-intensive countries. A number of countries (Burundi, DRC, South Sudan, and parts of the Sahel) remain locked in internal conflict resulting in record levels of refugees and Internally Displaced Persons, with adverse spillovers to neighboring countries.

International Monetary Fund. African Dept.
This paper discusses São Tomé and Príncipe’s Second Review Under the Extended Credit Facility (ECF) and Request for Waivers for Nonobservance of Performance Criteria and modification of performance criteria. The economic outlook for 2017 and the medium term is favorable, but not without risks. The main sources of short-term risks to the outlook are ongoing pressure on foreign exchange supply, liquidation of Bank Equador, and continued weakness in the banking sector. In addition, the economy will remain vulnerable to global developments, including weak demand in the key European and emerging markets. The IMF staff recommends completion of the second review and the disbursement of an amount equivalent to SDR 634,285 under the ECF arrangement.