(Business in Cameroon) - The president of the Union of Central African Employers (Unipace), Cameroonian Célestin Tawamba (photo) met, February 18 in Yaoundé, with the Cameroonian Prime Minister Joseph Dion Ngute and other government members to discuss ways to address the current currency shortage in the sub-region. This was during the official opening of the Promote Fair 2019, in the presence of the President of the CEMAC Commission, Gabonese Daniel Ona Ondo.
This shortage, according to Célestin Tawamba, “undermines the credibility of companies with suppliers. It degrades the country risk of the sub-region, and tends to divert institutions and credit insurers from our companies”.
According to the official, the situation exposes companies in the sub-region to real and significant risks with regard to the protection of their assets. This is due to the non-effective payment of premiums owed to international reinsurance companies.
As solutions, President Tawamba recommended urgent consideration of the currency issue because it is important that measures are taken to establish priorities in the choice of operations subject to transfer orders.
“As arbitrary as it could be, the establishment of such priorities is absolutely strategic, the time necessary to pass a critical threshold, in order to avoid the succession of difficulties detrimental to business and the economy in general. Unipace and its member employers' organizations are willing to join in this reflection,” Célestin Tawamba said.
The Cameroonian private sector has been complaining for several months about the scarcity of foreign exchange. The Professional Association of Credit Institutions of Cameroon (Apeccam) reveals that “the processing and response times for foreign exchange requests by commercial banks at the Central Bank have become uncertain and now range from several weeks to several months”.
Beac blames commercial banks, suggesting the latter have refused to repatriate foreign currency.