World, Africa

Cameroon calls for strong Central African economy

Economic, Monetary Community of Central Africa heads of state meet for extraordinary summit in Cameroon's capital

Aurore Bonny   | 22.11.2019
Cameroon calls for strong Central African economy

YAOUNDE, Cameroon

Cameroon's President Paul Biya on Friday called for strengthening and diversifying Central African economies, improving the business climate and raising the level of private investment in the region.

The heads of state of the Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa (CEMAC) met this Friday in Cameroon's capital Yaounde for an extraordinary summit for the consolidation of the region's economic recovery.

The region will pursue its collective economic and financial recovery strategy with the assistance of the IMF, World Bank, African Development Bank and French Development Agency, announced Biya, the current president of the community, after several hours of consultations between the CEMAC leaders.

The heads of state welcomed the current level of foreign exchange reserves that it is compatible with the region's fixed exchange rate regime, Biya added.

Biya also stressed the quality of fiscal consolidation, which must be realistic and create the conditions to boost growth and improve people's living conditions.

The meeting also addressed the diversification of wealth sources to respond to some vulnerabilities, including uncertain macroeconomic context, geopolitical and trade tensions threatening the development of global trade and volatile commodity prices as well as the security challenges that exert strong pressure on public finances.

But Biya, in an enthusiastic tone, also reminded positive figures on the economic situation of CEMAC, such as the region's growth rate of 1.8% in 2018, an inflation rate below 3%, significantly reduced budget and external deficits and a public debt of nearly 50% of gross domestic product for the whole community.

In addition to these positive figures, trade reserves are now established at more than three months of imports and the economic and financial orientation of Central Africa eliminates any risk of monetary adjustment, according to Biya.

The CEMAC is made up of six countries: Cameroon, Gabon, the Central African Republic (CAR), Chad, the Republic of Congo and Equatorial Guinea.

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