Sao Tome and Principe Population, People, Languages and Religions

By | January 21, 2022

São Tomé and Príncipe Country Overview

Where is Sao Tome and Principe located? São Tomé and Príncipe is an island country located in the Gulf of Guinea. This island country, which can be found about 200 kilometers off the African coast, is assigned to “Greenwich Mean Time” on the time zone map. In this time zone there is no time difference to the coordinated world time. This remains the case throughout the year, as daylight savings time is not common.

Bordering Countries of Sao Tome and Principe

According to abbreviationfinder, Sao Tome and Principe is an island nation located in the Gulf of Guinea off the western coast of Central Africa. It is bordered by two countries, Equatorial Guinea and Gabon.

Equatorial Guinea is located to the north of Sao Tome and Principe, separated by a maritime border. It borders Cameroon to the north and Gabon to the east and south. It has an area of 28,051 square kilometers and a population of 1,222,245. The country is divided into seven provinces, including Bioko Norte, Bioko Sur, Centro Sur, Kie-Ntem, Litoral, Wele-Nzas and Annobón Province. Its capital city is Malabo which lies at the northern tip of Bioko Island. The country’s official language is Spanish while French and Portuguese are also spoken in some areas. Equatorial Guinea has one of Africa’s highest GDP per capita due to its oil reserves but it also suffers from poverty due to its lack of economic diversification.

Gabon lies to the east and south of Sao Tome and Principe with a maritime border between them. It has an area of 267,667 square kilometers with a population of 2 million people split across nine provinces: Estuaire Province, Haut-Ogooué Province, Moyen-Ogooué Province, Ngaye M’bam et Inoubou Province, Ngounié Province, Nyanga Province, Ogooué-Ivindo Province, Ogooué-Lolo Province, Ogooué Maritime Province. The capital city Libreville lies on a coastal plain near the mouth of Gabon River in Estuaire province. French is spoken as an official language while Fang is spoken in rural areas. Gabon has abundant natural resources such as petroleum deposits that have made it one of Africa’s wealthier nations while poverty remains prevalent due to unequal distribution wealth.

Sao Tome and Principe National Flag

Population Distribution

As of 2023, the latest population of Sao Tome and Principe is 211,122, based on our calculation of the current data from UN (United Nations).

Total population 211,122
Population growth rate 1.58%
Birth rate 32.40 births per 1,000 people
Life expectancy
Overall life expectancy 63.86 years
Men life expectancy 62.61 years
Women life expectancy 65.14 years
Age structure
0-14 years 41.20%
15-64 years 55.97%
65 years and above 2.83%
Median age 17.90 years
Gender ratio (Male to Female) 1.00
Population density 219.01 residents per km²
Urbanization 37.80%
88% of African (Forros, Angolares etc.), 10% of European-African descent, 2% of Europeans (mainly Portuguese)
Christian 80% (Catholics, Evangelical Protestants, Seventh-Day Adventists)
Human Development Index (HDI) 0.609
HDI ranking 137th out of 194

People in Sao Tome and Principe

Around 210,000 people live in São Tomé and Príncipe. Most of them are descendants of slaves or contract workers who were brought to the islands by the Portuguese during their colonial rule. The slaves came mainly from Angola, the contract workers from Angola, Mozambique and the Cape Verde Islands. Some Portuguese still live on the islands. There are also common descendants of Portuguese and Africans.

73 percent of the population live in a city, so 27 percent in the country.

Each woman has an average of 4.3 children.

Languages in Sao Tome and Principe

The official language in São Tomé and Príncipe is Portuguese. Several Creole languages ​​are also spoken. Most of the speakers have Saotomenisch (also called Forro). It is based on Portuguese, plus the influence of several Bantu languages. That is also the case with Angolar. It is also based on Portuguese, plus elements of a Bantu language from Angola. Only a few speakers in Príncipe still have principle that is similar to Saotom.

Religions in Sao Tome and Principe

72 percent of the population of São Tomé and Príncipe are Catholics. 10 percent belong to another Christian church.