APPS - UE/São Tomé and Príncipe

The protocol signed under this agreement expired on 22 May, 2018, a situation that led to the departure of the European Union fleet from São Tomé waters. Negotiations with the European Commission are currently suspended, pending their resumption at all times.



Direção-Geral de Recursos Naturais, Segurança e Serviços Marítimos (DGRM)
Avenida Brasília
1449-030 Lisboa Portugal
Phone: +351 213 035 700
Fax: +351 213 035 702

La Délégation de l'Union européenne au Gabon, pour la Guinée équatoriale, Sao Tomé-et-Principe et la CEEAC
Lotissement des Cocotiers, Bas de Gué-Gué
BP 321 Libreville – Gabon
Phone: +241 01 73 22 50 - +241 07 40 19 98/99

 Image (Área and Subareas)


The first fisheries agreement with São Tomé and Príncipe dates from 1984. The current Fisheries Partnership Agreement, concluded between the European Union and São Tomé and Príncipe, covered the period from 1 June 2006 to 31 May 2010 , renewable since then. The current EU / São Tomé Fisheries Protocol, which covers the period from 23 May 2014 to 22 May 2018, was initialed on 19 December 2013, and the Council adopted Decision 2014/334 / EU on its signature and provisional application, on May 19, 2014.
This Agreement is part of the set of tuna fishing agreements, negotiated with third countries in West Africa, allowing EU vessels (Spain, France and Portugal) to fish in São Toméan waters.

 Eligibility conditions

  • Have a national fishing license in accordance with Article 6 of the Control Regulation (Regulation 1224/2009)
  • Hold a fishing authorization for fishing operations outside Union waters
  • The authorization requirements have been complied with in accordance with the requirements of the annex or the APPS in question
  • The fishing vessel applies the relevant IMO vessel identification system, if required under Union law
  • The fishing vessel is not on a list of IUU vessels adopted by an RFMO and / or the Union under the IUU Regulation
  • If applicable, the flag Member State has fishing opportunities under the relevant fishing agreement or the relevant RFMO provisions
  • Have the respective satellite monitoring equipment (VMS) installed and operational
  • Have the electronic data recording and transmission system in place and operationally operational (Diário de Pesca Eletrônico - DPE)
  • Have the respective valid Navigation and Conformity Certificates.

 Fishing Arrangements Agreement

  • Surface longliners: 6    
  • Tuna seiners: 28 vessels.

National fishing modalities

Surface longliners:
  • Vessels in the first two years of the protocol's validity
  • 1 vessel in the last two years of the protocol's validity.

 Fishing gear

  • Surface longline

 License Request

Each license application is accompanied by the following documents:

  • Proof of payment of the "flat-rate" advance for the respective period of validity
  • Recent color photograph, representing the ship in side view    
  • Any other document or certificate required under the specific provisions applicable to the type of vessel concerned under the Protocol.

 License Cost

For surface longliners:

  • €2,310 per vessel, equivalent to the fees due for 42 tonnes per year for the first and second years of application of the Protocol
  • € 2,310 per vessel, equivalent to the fees due for 38.5 tonnes per year for the third year of application of the Protocol 
  • € 2,310 per vessel, equivalent to the fees due for 33 tonnes per year for the fourth year of application of the Protocol.


     License request
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     Payment order
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Boarding of observers

European Union vessels must receive on board an observer designated by the São Toméan authorities with the mission of verifying the catches made in the waters of São Tomé and Príncipe. The observer's time on board is a tide. At the express request of the competent São Toméan authorities, the embarkation may be spread over several tides, depending on the average duration of the tides foreseen for a given vessel. The observer's salary and social charges are borne by São Tomé and Príncipe.

Boarding of sailors

For the fleet of tuna seiners and surface longliners, at least 20% of the seamen on board are of Sao Tome origin or, possibly, from an ACP country, during the tuna fishing campaign in the São Tomé and Príncipe fishing zone.


The vessels respect the measures and recommendations adopted by the ICCAT, for the region, with regard to fishing gear, its technical specifications and any other technical measure applicable to the respective fishing activities.

Authorized areas

European Union tuna seiners and surface longliners may engage in fishing activities in waters beyond 12 nautical miles from the baselines. Any fishing activity in the area destined for joint exploitation between São Tomé and Príncipe and Nigeria is prohibited without discrimination, delimited by the coordinates indicated in Appendix 3 (Annex to the Protocol).

 Interdictions/Closure Period

All fishing activities in the area destined for joint exploitation between São Tomé and Príncipe and Nigeria are prohibited.

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 Mandatory communications

European Union vessels operating in São Tomé and Príncipe waters must notify the competent authorities of São Tomé and Príncipe at least six hours in advance of their intention to enter or leave São Tomé and Príncipe waters, as well as how, when notifying the entry / exit of the São Tomé and Príncipe EEZ, simultaneously communicate its position, as well as the fish already present on board.

 Designated ports

In the areas of Fernão Dias, Neves, Ana Chaves.

 Inspection at sea

Inspections in the São Tomé and Príncipe sea of European Union vessels that have a license must be carried out by Sao Tome vessels and inspectors, clearly identified as affected by fisheries control. The captain of the European Union vessel must facilitate the embarkation and work of the São Toméan inspectors.

 Inspection in port

Inspections in the port or in the waters of the port in the fishing zone of São Tomé and Príncipe of European Union vessels holding a license must be carried out by vessels and inspectors from São Tomé, clearly identified as affected by fisheries control.

Serious infractions

Any infringement by a European Union vessel that has a license in accordance with the provisions of this Annex must be mentioned in an inspection report. The report must be transmitted to the European Union and the flag State within 24 hours.

The penalty for the reported violation is determined by São Tomé and Príncipe according to the provisions of the national legislation in force.


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The constant information does not exempt from consulting the legislation.