Cameroon: Senate - Ordinance Bill Adopted

The House President, Marcel Niat Njifenji chaired the June 18, 2021 plenary sitting during which the bill was adopted after deliberations.

Bill No 164/PJL/SEN/2L to ratify the Ordinance of May 26, 2021 to amend and supplement some provisions of Law No 2018/18 of December 17, 2020: Finance law of the Republic of Cameroon for the 2021 financial year has been adopted at the Senate. The legal instrument was adopted on June 18, 2020 during a plenary sitting chaired by Senate President, Marcel Niat Njifenji.

The adopted bill was defended by the Minister of Finance, Louis Paul Motaze and it seeks to raise the ceiling for non-concessional loans in the State budget from FCFA 300 billion to FCFA 750 billion. It also authorises the government to resort to issuing of bonds on the international market for an amount of FCFA 450 billion for the partial or total redemption of the current Eurobond. Minister Louis Paul Motaze explained that Cameroon which had made a guarantee and ringfencing arrangement, consisting of a monthly provision of FCFA 15 billion in an escrow account as repayment of the 2015 Eurobond, is facing some cash-flow difficulties owing notably to the Covid-19 related health crisis and the volatile economic situation in terms of revenue. The planned redemption operation, he further stated, seeks to improve Cameroon's fiscal space through debt profiling. Additionally, in the case of public finance constraints, the operation could, in the long term, help to ensure, among other things, optimal management of government cash-flow, the completion of major first-generation transformative projects and the financing of projects under the National Development Strategy 2020- 2030. When questioned on the management of funds intended to curb the spread of the Covid-19 virus in Cameroon, the Minister said the overall objective was for government to save the lives of the population. However, he called on social media influencers to be patient and wait on competent authorities to act in accordance with the law.

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