- Maintaining economic stability while making the transition toward a more inclusive and sustainable high growth will be key.
- Discussions focused on policies available for the authority to complete ongoing infrastructure projects and address bottlenecks in projects preparation.
- Strong ownership and steadfast implementation of the country’s economic reform program supported by the IMF’s ECF facility will be essential to its success.
Mr. Mitsuhiro Furusawa, Deputy Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), issued the following statement in Yaoundé today at the conclusion of a visit to Cameroon:
“My visit to Cameroon has been very helpful. I wish to thank the Cameroonian authorities for meeting with me to discuss their country’s economic prospects. I particularly thank Prime Minister Philémon Yang, Finance Minister Alamine Ousmane Mey, Economy Minister Louis Paul Motazé and Governor Abbas Tolli of the Bank of Central African States for our fruitful discussions. During my visit, I had the pleasure to meet various stakeholders in Yaoundé including civil society and private sector representatives and addressing members of the National Assembly and the Senate.
“I commended the Cameroonian authorities for their leadership in addressing the challenges facing Cameroon and the Economic and Monetary Community of Central African States (CEMAC). Cameroon is CEMAC’s largest economy and it has played a central role in the coordinated efforts to maintain regional stability that led to the IMF Executive Board’s recent approval of financial support for economic reform programs in Gabon, Cameroon and Chad.
“In my meetings with the authorities, we discussed how to maintain economic stability while making the transition towards more inclusive and sustainable higher growth. The country must continue to deal with the significant challenges presented by lower oil prices, reduced demand from emerging markets, and tighter global financial conditions. Security challenges from neighboring countries—particularly the Boko Haram insurgency in the Lake Chad basin, are adding to the burden. This has led to sharply lower export earnings and government revenues as well as higher government expenditure. Poverty, inequality, and unemployment levels remain high.
“Against this background, we discussed a range of policy options available for the authorities to complete ongoing infrastructure projects, address bottlenecks in project preparation that have led to a large stock of contracted but undisbursed loans and refrain from new non-concessional borrowing. Strong ownership and steadfast implementation of the country’s economic reform program—supported by the IMF’s Extended Credit Facility—will be essential to its success, as well as to maintaining the stability of the CFA franc peg. I noted that accelerated implementation of structural reforms to improve governance and the business environment will be key to enhance the economy’s resilience to future shocks and unlock Cameroon’s growth potential.
“I would like to thank the Government and people of Cameroon for their welcome and warm hospitality. The Fund looks forward to continuing its strong partnership with the government and supporting its ambitious reform program not only through financing, but also through policy advice and a comprehensive capacity development strategy.”