(Business in Cameroon) - Over the first nine months of 2019 (ended in September 2019), Cameroon’s public debt servicing stood at XAF722.7 billion, up from the XAF545.9 billion estimated during the same period in 2018. This is revealed by the Ministry of Finance in the budget execution report, for the period under review, it just published.
According to the ministry, although the debt servicing is up compared with the estimate during the same period in 2018, it is only 56.3% of the XAF1,283 billion the country expected to service during the year under review. In detail, the actual external debt service stood at XAF379.1 billion at end September 2019, i.e. an execution rate of 70.1%. Domestic debt service stood at XAF343.6 billion at the end of September 2019, representing an execution rate of 46.3% compared to the XAF742 billion forecasted for the said fiscal year.
These figures mean that Cameroon should have allocated XAF 560.3 billion to debt settlement, over the last three months of 2019, to achieve its budgetary objectives. This represents an average expenditure of more than XAF186 billion per month or slightly more than twice the amount it was able to allocate to this expenditure during the first nine months of the year. All these in a difficult context.
Indeed, the Ministry of Finance explains that the target for budget execution was not met partly because of the decline in the prices of main export products between January and September 2019.
Indeed, the ministry indicates, the average price of cocoa fell by 0.2% to $2,333.3 per ton. The average price of oil fell by 11.9% to $64.7 per barrel while the price of aluminium fell by 25.6% to $1,597.1 per ton. Arabica and Robusta coffee prices fell by 12.8% and 13.6% to 97.7 US cents and 74.2 US cents per pound respectively.
The average price of rubber was 313.1 US cents/kg, down by 11.2% and the average prices of palm oil and cotton fell by 8.5% and 12.1% respectively to US$549.9 per ton and 78.9 US cents per pound.