(Business in Cameroon) - On September 18, 2020, the Ministers of Forest, Industries, and Environment of the Central African region validated a decision prohibiting countries of the Congo basin from exporting raw timber starting from January 1, 2022. The decision was validated during a videoconference of the said Ministers (under the supervision of Cameroon’s Minister of Forestry and Wildlife Jules Doret Ndongo).
To support the measure, the ministries decided that special economic zones will be created for primary, secondary, and tertiary wood processing industries. The ministers also validated the decision to create a Regional Committee for the Sustainable Industrialization of the Timber Sector in the Congo Basin (Crib) as well as the regulation on the development of forest plantations.
Also, they validated the decision to designate the International School of Agriculture and Woodwork (Esiamb) as a sub-regional university institution dedicated to vocational woodworking training.
At the end of the videoconference, they recommended that the Council of Ministers of the Central African Economic Union should adopt these decisions to make them community decisions.
They also suggested the CEMAC Commission should develop guidelines on forest taxation. These guidelines will then be incorporated into member countries’ national legislations to achieve harmonized forest taxation within the community space.