15 May 2018

Cameroon: Global Market - Prices of Cameroonian Oil And Timber Soar

The current World Bank commodity market outlook shows prices of products including banana, cocoa and coffee will rise this year on the world market more than expected.

Government's decision to peg the 2018 state budget on non-oil revenue may as well receive fresh accolades for leading to a budget surplus if one should go by a recent World Bank report. Global commodity prices strengthened in the first quarter of 2018 and are expected to be higher on average this year than in 2017. Broadbased price increases have been supported by both demand and supply factors, including restraint by major oil producers, trade tensions, the report said.


The World Bank Commodities Price Data of May 2, 2018, gives Cameroon reason to once again count its oil resources among main sources of revenue after a steady price decline in recent years. It said oil prices rose by 10 per cent in the first quarter of 2018, averaging $64.60 (US Dollars) per barrel. It showed the price of crude oil (Brent) reached its peak at the end of April, hitting 71.6 USD per barrel against 67.0 USD per barrel in January. Note that the prices of Cameroonian crude oil plummeted to as low as 44.0 USD and 52.4 USD per barrel in 2016 and 2015 respectively. The World Bank predicts a further increase this year.

Raw Materials

The national calculations on non-oil revenue appears to be materializing as well- especially measures taken by the customs and taxation departments to ensure the wood sector contributes more income to the national treasury. The recent commodity price data shows prices of sawn wood from Cameroon soared in the first quarter of 2018. The prices reached 674.4 USD per cubic meter in April against 666.9 USD in January. It also indicated prices of timber logs from Cameroon fluctuated between 430.3 and 429.7 USD per cubic meter in the first quarter. Though the price dropped to 429.7 USD in April, the trend shows a significant rise in prices of Cameroonian logs in the global market. They stood at an average of 388.6 USD, 387.4 USD and 395.2 USD in 2015, 2016 and 2017 respectively. The global price of cotton remained stable while that rubber of fluctuated.


Meanwhile prices of cocoa are equally on the rise. They rose from 2.19 USD in January to 2.62 USD per kg in April. The cocoa market could well be back on track given that prices had dropped drastically from an average of 3.14 USD in 2015 to 2.03 per kg in 2017. As for coffee; Robusta prices have been fluctuating between 1.96 and 1.95 USD per kg from January to April this year. Arabica prices currently stand at 2.96 USD, representing a slight drop from 3.01 USD per kg in January. Tea currently sells at 2.88 USD per kg from 2.77 USD in March. Prices of Bananas have increased in the EU, but remained stable in the US. Prices of other commodities like maize, rice and wheat have also witnessed an increase.


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