The European Union (EU) has once again given Cameroon’s Competitiveness Support Facility a FCFA 6.5 billion life, following a recent partnership agreement signed with the Government of Cameroon.
The FCFA 6.5 billion financial agreement was signed in Yaoundé between Cameroon’s Minister of the Economy, Planning and Regional Development, Alamine Ousmane Mey, and the EU Ambassador to Cameroon, H.E Hans Peter Schadek.
According to Schadek, the EU is resolute to encourage reforms and support the dynamism of local economic operators, whom he described as “the engines of the economy” vis-avis job creation and wealth.
“Improving Cameroon’s competitiveness requires not only strengthening the capacity of these operators, but also promoting an enabling business environment. These reforms could enable the country to better benefit from free access to the European Market, particularly with the implementation of the Economic Partnership Agreement EPA,” he stated.
To him, “while consolidating the achievements of the actions undertaken within the framework of the implementation of the programmes and projects previously dedicated to the improvement of the business climate and the local productivity, it will be, for the actors involved in the conduct of this new tool, to improve the competitiveness of enterprises, reform the business environment and consolidate the standardisation and energy efficiency of enterprises.”
Meanwhile, mounting the rostrum, Cameroon’s Minister of the Economy, Planning and Regional Development, Alamine Ousmane Mey, said the financial cushion is in tandem with Cameroon’s Growth and Employment Strategy Paper (GESP), which lay emphasis on a better system of managing private sector development issues.
“Besides improving Cameroon’s competitiveness by strengthening the capacity of its economic operators and promoting a more business-friendly institutional environment, it will enable the economy to better benefit from trade liberalisation, arising from the implementation of the EPA and to stimulate economic growth and job creation.”
The programme to be implemented for four years fully sponsored by EU will be geared towards ensuring that companies and professional associations benefit from high technical support in a broad range of areas identified as crucial for growth and development.
Such areas will include management, loans and financing, research and development, marketing and industrial development among other things.
It should be recalled that the EU has supported Cameroon’s business climate and private sector development through a programme on Custom’s Modernisation and another on Upgrading of Enterprises and Quality amounting to 24.9 million Euros for the last 10 years.