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Business in Cameroon | 17 October 2019
France: First supplier of imported products under Cameroon’s economic partnership with the EU
by Sylvain Andzongo
(Business in Cameroon) - Between August 4, 2016, and August 4, 2019, under the economic partnership agreement with the European Union, there were four main suppliers for products imported to Cameroon. This is revealed by the Cameroonian ministry of the economy.
France is the first of those countries with XAF48.61 billion worth of products imported for a capital loss of XAF1.804 billion (26.5% of the overall losses). Next comes Spain with XAF52.442 billion worth of imports for a capital loss of XAF1.035 billion (14.8% of overall losses) and Portugal with XAF21.133 billion of products imported and a capital loss of XAF993 million (14.2% of overall losses). The fourth country that imported the most was Germany that imported XAF21.468 billion worth of products to Cameroon with a capital loss of XAF835 million representing 11.9% of overall capital losses in the framework of that partnership during the period under review.
Implemented since 2016, the partnership plans for the progressive opening of the Cameroonian market to the European Union’s imports. This opening is a 3-phase process. Each phase represents the group of products to be liberalized according to its nature and a specific timetable.
The first phase started on August 4, 2016, and consecrates a yearly 25% reduction of customs duties on products that will reduce poverty and improve residents’ wellbeing. The products in this group are notably medical equipment, agricultural inputs, and gas.
The second phase started on August 4, 2017, and consecrates a 15% yearly reduction of the customs duties of products that will boost local production. The products concerned are notably clinker, inputs for the foodstuff industry, generators, trucks, pickups, and plotters.
The third phase will start on August 4, 2020. It consecrates a yearly 10% reduction of duties on high tax-yielding products such as fuel, cement, motorcycles, passenger and transport vehicles.
The timetable currently being followed plans for the progressive decrease of customs duties till 2029. For products in phase 1, the decrease should be completed this year. For products concerned by the second and third phases, the decrease is to be completed in 2023 and in 2029 respectively.