(Business in Cameroon) - On May 28, 2020, World Bank Executive Directors approved a $376 million (over XAF221 billion) loan as the fourth additional financing for the Women's Empowerment and Demographic Dividend in the Sahel (SWEDD) Project.
During Phase 2 of this project, because of which the loan was approved, activities will be intensified in Côte d'Ivoire, Mali, Mauritania, and Chad, and then extend to Cameroon and Guinea, official sources reveal. According to the World Bank, the envelope dedicated to Cameroon during the said phase is $75 million, or XAF44 billion.
"Cameroon's 2035 emergency plan relies on a healthy and educated population to realize the country's enormous potential for shared prosperity (...) However, as a result of child marriages, early and frequent pregnancies, and early school dropouts, girls, as well as their future children, are exposed to an increased risk of health problems and a significant decrease in their access to education and income prospects in adulthood. SWEDD 2 will act as a lever for girls' empowerment and the strengthening of human capital. It will initially focus on three regions: the Far North, the North, and Adamaoua, where approximately 700,000 girls aged 10 to 19 are exposed to these risks," said Abdoulaye Seck, the World Bank's Director of Operations for Cameroon.