15 March 2019

Cameroon: Concertation - Cameroon Business Forum On Monday

The Prime Minister, Head of Government is expected in the economic capital Douala to chair the 10th edition of the gathering aimed at promoting efficient public-private dialogue.

The 10th edition of the Cameroon Business Forum (CBF) will take place on Monday March 18, 2019. According to an official release, the Prime Minister, Head of Government, Joseph Dion Ngute will preside over discussions at Sawa Hotel in Douala. This year's dialogue will be held under the theme: "Emergence and Development of Private Investment in Cameroon."

Organised to improve the business climate, Monday's session of the Cameroon Business Forum will bring together government officials, economic operators and Cameroon's technical and financial partners. An estimate of 200 participants will be in attendance, according to previous records.

The Forum will be holding days after the Prime Minister received in audience on March 6, a delegation from the Cameroon Employers' Union (GICAM). Issues to be discussed during the dialogue are legion, prominent amongst them fiscal policy issues. Also, the crisis in the North West and South West Regions which have affected economic activities will preoccupy participants at the Forum. GICAM disclosed last year that businessmen had lost over FCFA 269 billion in earnings as of July 2018 and that 30 per cent - 40 per cent of businesses had been affected by the crisis.

Another issue that will be place on the table is the high cost of local raw materials. GICAM has often complained that raw materials in Cameroon are more expensive than those imported, almost doubling the price. Other issues businessmen have expressed worries about in the past have included the lengthy procedure to clear goods at port, the outstanding debt owed small and medium-sized enterprises by Government and a review of the public contract procedures that have resulted to abandoned projects.

CBF was established by government in January 2009 as part of reforms to involve the private sector, which is the engine of economic growth and main source of employment, in order to enable Cameroon attain its objective of becoming an emerging economy by 2035.

The Forum seeks to improve Cameroon's position in Doing Business and other rating agencies, promote an efficient public-private dialogue and remove obstacles in the business environment through reforms.

It also aims at enhancing growth of the private sector, identify reforms to improve on the investment climate promoting the development of both local and foreign investments in Cameroon.

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