Approximately 20 percent of São Tomé and Príncipe’s GDP is generated from the agriculture sector; cocoa is the primary export crop. Services comprise 65 percent of GDP, and industry, 16 percent. The country is highly dependent on imports, including for fuel, consumer goods, and food, and as such, fluctuations in those commodity prices can cause significant economic disruption. Lack of transportation infrastructure, including a deep-water port, is a major constraint to private investment, but the government is actively seeking private investment in this area.
The business environment is improving; reforms carried out from 2007 to 2011 modernized customs administration, reformed tax policies, and removed barriers to starting a small business. The government is now focused on developing the tourism and oil and gas sectors. Infrastructure, fisheries, and agriculture also offer promising opportunities for investment. New oil discoveries in the gulf of Guinea may attract increased attention to the small nation.