The African Development Bank (AfDB) has loaned the Cameroon government 57.7 billion FCFA (about US$116 million) to finance its budgetary support programme which targets businesses and families affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Cameroon’s Minister of the Economy, Planning and Regional Development, Alamine Ousmane Mey who signed the 88 million euro loan explained that it would allow the government to reduce the negative effects of the coronavirus pandemic on businesses and households across the country.
Mey further said that securing the loan “is a direct corollary of the national strategic response to this health crisis, which has also become an economic crisis.”
This new African Development Bank assistance comes on the heels of an earlier 6.3 billion FCFA (US$12.1 million) the institution granted to member countries of the Central African Economic and Monetary Commission popularly known by its French acronym CEMAC (Cameroon, Gabon, the Central African Republic, Chad, Equatorial Guinea and Congo Brazzaville) through its African Development Fund window in June this year to enable them efficaciously fight against the effects of the pandemic crisis. This loan was already envisaged in the rectified 2020 budget of Cameroon.
It should be noted that official figures published by the Cameroon government indicate that over 90% of businesses consider themselves negatively impacted by the shocks of the pandemic. Within the same context, 74% of households have reported drastic drops in their incomes.
According to a study carried out between May and June this year, the Inter-patronal grouping of Cameroonian business operators projects that the annual loss in turnover to be suffered by businesses would be about 3.139 billion FCFA (about US$6 million) in 2020. This would surely reduce their capacity to contribute to the revenue of the state by about 521 billion FCFA (about US$1.1 billion).