Development Projects in Cameroon
Cameroon, or “miniature Africa” is filled with immense diversity in anthropology, history, and climate geography.  Captivating in its beauty, Cameroon is striking for its undiscovered natural resources and government’s stability. Nevertheless, there are few development projects that have been “left dormant while awaiting investments in the different sectors of agro-industry, road, port and airport infrastructure, energy, real estate and urban planning, in the mining industries and new technologies.”

The April 2013 Act granted various tax and customs exemptions over a five to ten-year period.  Although this act is an incentive for the private sector, the installation phases of new investors were facilitated and their production safeguarded.

With a goal to boost the economic growth rate and tap into a potential 300 million consumer market here are five development projects in Cameroon that aim to be completed by 2035.

  1. National Roadway: The first version of this FCfa 14, 976.5 billion national railroad plan was presented on April 28, 2011 in Yaoundé. This project would expand the current infrastructure, interconnecting the country to adjacent states, “while opening up the main agricultural and mining production areas.”  Currently CAMRAIL, Cameroon’s earliest authorized rail company, is a favorable route compared to travel by bus, especially in rainy seasons. Nevertheless, this project’s progression has been sluggish, with its completion date estimated for 2020 due to a lack of funding.
  2. Agriculture: The Inter-Professional Council for Cocoa and Coffee (CICC) has shared their concerns with the Institute of Agricultural Research for Development (IRAD) regarding climate change challenges faced by farmer. A project in the works, IRAD is formulating a cocoa and coffee variety that will be more resilient to current extreme climate changes as part of the development projects in Cameroon. Dedicated to restarting their cocoa and coffee industry, production will hopefully be increased from 60,000 tons to 185,000 tons by 2020.
  3. Inclusive and Resilient Cities Development Project: Launched on August 22, 2017, this project will focus on improving access to infrastructure in poor urban communities and urban management itself. With a projected cost of $160 million, this project has four major components: strengthening capacity for inclusive and resilient urban management, improving connectivity and living environments in beneficiary cities, the Contingent Emergency Response, and Project Management, Coordination, Monitoring, and Evaluation. The closing date for this project is March 31, 2024. 
  4. Telecommunication: Chinese company, ZTE, opened up in December 2015 with capital of FCfa 480 million. Named “ZTE Cameroun Sarl” the company covers a telecoms infrastructure, training on their networks, as well as repair and maintenance. Using this grant, ZTE can directly promote their equipment to the Cameroon market.
  5. Solar Energy: Seeing the sun as wealth, Vincent Bolloré, president of the Bolloré group, strives for decentralized systems to bring electricity to villages where electricity access is costly. In 2016, the group completed the Canal Olympia cinema, a project located at Yaoundé I University that is entirely operated by solar power.

These five development projects in Cameroon not only promote the welfare of the locals, but also create incentives for international interest.  The year 2035 is a big one for Cameroon, and hopefully, funding will receive a big push so these projects can both thrive but maintain longevity.

– Tara Jackson

Photo: Flickr