(Business in Cameroon) - Electric utility Eneo’s investment needs over the 2020-2031 period is about €795 million (XAF521 billion), according to the briefing note the company published in August 2020.
However, it believes that it would not be able to raise the required funds if the Cameroonian energy industry is not consolidated. “Only a lasting consolidation of finances in the energy sector will help restore investors’ confidence and allow the mobilization of funds necessary for the investments,” ENEO indicates.
Indeed, over the past few years, ENEO has been experiencing cash flow problems because some of its major clients (the State and its agencies included) have unpaid bills. According to credible sources, some months ago, these bills were still over XAF100 billion.
But, in June 2020, Cameroon paid a first tranche (XAF45 billion) of its bills and over the first five months of 2020, it regularly paid its invoices. Also, the country is planning to pay a second tranche (up to XAF32 billion) of its dues.
Thanks to these cash inflows, ENEO became more optimistic about the prospects in the energy sector. It is even preparing to raise XAF100 billion on the local banking market to refund a middle-term loan and fund the company’s 2020 and 2021 investment projects.
Let’s note that the electric utility’s investment budget for the 2020 financial year was XAF67 billion. However, because of the coronavirus pandemic, it has been reduced to XAF45.7 billion. This is down by XAF6.4 billion compared with the average yearly investment needs it posted for the coming 10 years.
Brice R. Mbodiam