(Business in Cameroon) - Currently, the World Bank’s project portfolio in Cameroon consists of 14 active projects totaling US$1583.2 million (nearly XAF950 billion). The figures were disclosed in Yaoundé, yesterday, January 21, by the Minister of Economy (MINEPAT) Alamine Ousmane Mey during the signature of a convention for the development of the Lake Chad region.
According to the MINEPAT, 66% of the funds for that portfolio is made up of concessional loans from the International Development Association (IDA) window, the World Bank’s branch that helps the poorest countries; 32% was raised from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) window, which is the World Bank’s non-concessional window, while the remaining 2% were raised through grants.
The official further revealed that apart from the funds provided for development projects, the World Bank has also provided Cameroon US$400 million (over XAF200 billion) as budget support.
"These important resources provided to the Cameroonian public treasury support the implementation of structural reforms in public finance, energy, education, health, infrastructure, and public procurement," Alamine Ousmane Mey said.
Let’s note that according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), a loan is said to be concessional if its grant element (the difference between the loan's nominal value and the sum of the discounted future debt-service payments to be made by the borrower expressed as a percentage of the loan's face value) is greater than or equal to 35%. This type of loan is encouraged by the IMF because it is considered less expensive, but is viewed with suspicion by sovereignists because of the conditions imposed for its obtention.