#COVID19: CEMAC Countries To Experience Weak Economic Growth

The economic challenges being witnessed by CEMAC is compounded by the COVID-19 pandemic and reluctance to use vaccines by citizens in CEMAC countries.

The economic growth of member countries of the Central African Economic and Monetary Commission (CEMAC) will be relatively weak during the 2021 fiscal year.

The reality was observed during a recent visio-conference of representatives of the member countries, which are: Cameroon, Congo (Brazzaville), Gabon, Chad, Central African Republic, and Equatorial Guinea.

The growth rate of the Gross Domestic Products (GDP) in CEMAC countries is envisaged to stand at 1.3 per cent  after the 2020 recession of -1.7 per cent.

This rather prudent projection is “linked to uncertainties associated with the persistence of the COVID-19 health crises and the delays recorded in the deployment of vaccination campaigns,” according to a statement by the Bank of Central African States (BEAC).

The projection has dropped by 0.5 per cent as compared to the 1.9 per cent envisaged by BEAC in April this year. The April 2021 projection itself already witnessed a drop of 1 per cent as compared to the 2.8 per cent projected in December 2020.

In effect, vaccination against the COVID-19 is not very popular in the CEMAC countries.

In Cameroon for example, three months after the beginning of vaccination, the population has not been enthusiastic in taking the vaccine in spite of vaccination campaigns being carried out.

As of June 16, 2021, of the 70,300 persons who had voluntarily taken the first dose of vaccines, only 16,200 persons presented themselves for the second dose.

Another mass vaccination campaign was launched in Cameroon on Wednesday, July 7, 2021 to last until July 11, 2021. This time around, health personnel would visit homes, markets, churches and all meeting places to convince the people to get themselves vaccinated.

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Chief Bisong Etahoben

Chief Bisong Etahoben is a Cameroonian investigative journalist and traditional ruler. He writes for international media and has participated in several transnational investigations. Etahoben won the first-ever Cameroon Investigative Journalist Award in 1992. He serves as a member of a number of international investigative journalism professional bodies including the Forum for African Investigative Reporters (FAIR). He is HumAngle's Francophone and Central Africa editor.

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