(Business in Cameroon) - The World Bank published a report last December recommending that the Cameroonian government relinquish control over some productive sectors to leave room for the private sector.
In the “Creating Markets in Cameroon: Country Private Sector Diagnostic” report, the institution said: “the state should not mix its public role with a commercial one. Often in a dominant position, large SOEs (state-owned enterprises, ed) discourage the development of private sector solutions for the delivery of certain goods and services, frequently aggravating the fiscal position of the country.” However, despite this large presence of the state in the commercial sector, banking credit in the country is mostly directed to the private sector (62%), but the World Bank estimates the volume could be higher, “as it is behind compared to that of other countries such as Côte d’Ivoire or the Republic of Congo”.
Achieving this goal requires focusing on building the capacity of government agencies, notably the Technical Restructuring Committee -CTR- and the Division of Participations and Contributions -DPC, improving governance of public enterprises and monitoring their activities, as well as deploying corrective actions to prepare for their restructuring and the eventual transfer of some of their assets to private entrepreneurs.
Many public and state-owned companies mainly in the agricultural and infrastructure sectors are currently experiencing difficulties. They include Socodeton, Semry, Sodeblé, Sodepa, SCAN, Labogenie, Mategnie, Chantier naval, etc.