Cameroon Tribune (Yaoundé)

Cameroon: Steel Processing Company in Gestation

A Memorandum of Understanding was signed on Friday January 18 in Yaounde.

The government of Cameroon and the steel company, "Société les Aciéries du Cameroun" on Friday, January 18, 2013 at the Star Building in Yaounde signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the creation of a steel processing plant in order to produce iron rots and other metals from imported materials and locally mined iron ore.

Prime Minister, Head of Government, Philemon Yang chaired the ceremony in which the government was represented by the Minister of Finance, Alamine Ousmane Mey, the Secretary of State in the Ministry of Mines, Industries and Technological Development, Fuh Calistus Gentry and Société les Aciéries du Cameroun by its General Manager, Fokou Bernard.

Talking to the press after the ceremony, the Minister of Finance, Alamine Ousmane Mey said "It is about an investment of roughly FCFA 30 billion with an impact on job creation." He said government has set out to encourage the promoters of the project through giving incentives at two levels. "Firstly, during the construction phase, we need to ease the importation of important equipment. We also need to reduce the fiscal cost of investment and that is why exoneration is given to the company on equipment imported," he said. "Secondly, during the first eight years of production, they will benefit from fiscal incentives that concern customs and tax exonerations." He promised the government's support to the project through the Ministry of Mines, industries and Technological Development.

The General Manager of Société les Aciéries du Cameroun, Fokou Bernard said the project consisted in producing iron rots and processing iron ore. He said the company will depend on the local iron ore mined by CAMIRON. The Secretary of State in the Ministry of Mines, Industries and Technological Development, Fuh Calistus Gentry reiterated the provisions of the Mining Code that clearly spells out that 15 per cent of all minerals mined in Cameroon must be processed locally. He said the project would create over 1,200 jobs.

On July 20, 2012 the foundation stone of another steel company, Guff Steel Industries was laid in Ombe in the South West Region.

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