Cameroon and France pen $83m deal

Cameroon and France have signed two development and debt relief contracts worth $83 million (FCFA 46 billion).

The contracts, signed in Yaoundé on Wednesday, will finance several development projects in the Central African nation.

The Economy and Finance ministers Louis Paul Motaze and Alamine Ousmane Mey respectively signed for Cameroon, while French ambassador Gilles Thibault and the Director of French Development Agency (AFD) in Cameroon, Mr Christian Yoka, signed for the former colonial power.

Public enterprises

“This agreement will expand the portfolio of shares and programmes financed by AFD in our country,” said Mr Motaze.

The development money will finance the public enterprises, human resource development and the management of state finances, says the contract document.

It further says that part of the financial grant will be used to implement the pilot face of the third debt cancellation and development contract (C2D) scheme.

The C2D is a French development assistance through which Paris reinvests in a debtor country through grants to projects agreed upon by both countries.

Economic relations

When Cameroon attained the Highly Indebted Poor Countries Initiative (HIPC-I) status in 2006, France was one of the state that salvaged it via the C2D.

Through the programme, the French Development Agency has financed many projects in Cameroon, including the second bridge over the Wouri in Douala, and the Lom-Pangar hydro-electric dam project in the east.

France and Cameroon have long-standing, close political and economic relations. French FDI stock in Cameroon, the third-largest in Central Africa, was over $1 billion in 2014, according to official statistics.

France was Cameroon’s third-largest supplier in 2015, accounting for 10.5 per cent of imports, behind China and Nigeria.

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