#COVID19: Despite Negative Impacts Of Pandemic, Cameroon Records 21.5% Rise In Exports

Although the report underlines that there has been little diversification in the export commodities of Cameroon, it is recovering from COVID-19.

Cameroon recorded export revenue of 1,080 billion FCFA (about 540 million US dollars) from a volume of 3.8 million tons of merchandise exported to the international market between Jan. and June 2021.

According to figures just released by Cameroon’s National Institute of Statistics (NIS), the figures indicate an increase of 191 billion FCFA (21.5 per cent) as against figures for the same period of 2020 which was marked notably by the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic that had paralysed international trade due to confinements decided by several countries.

However, the increase in export revenue within the first six months of 2021 is being recorded within a context marked by the persistence of the pandemic with the discovery of new variants of the virus circulating in the world including Cameroon.

“The increase in export revenue is attributable to the amelioration in the sale of certain principal export products. This includes essentially crude oil which saw an increase of 30.7 per cent, raw cocoa beans which augmented by 34.2 per cent, raw cotton which recorded an increase of 59.3 per cent, sawed timber which increased by 6.6 per cent and log timber by 13.8 per cent,” the NIS report indicated.

These statistics show that economic activities in the country have picked up in 2021 which is a corollary of the efficacy of the counter measures put in place against the COVID-19 pandemic in Cameroon and within the Central African Economic and Monetary Community popularly known by the French acronym CEMAC made up of Cameroon, Congo (Brazzaville), Chad, Gabon, the Central African Republic, and Equatorial Guinea.

The report however underlines the fact that there has been little diversification in the export commodities of Cameroon. 

As usual, exports are dominated by a handful of products. As at June this year, six of the products brought in 80 per cent of export revenue. They include crude oil (39 per cent), raw cocoa beans (13 per cent), liquefied natural gas (9 per cent), sawed timber (7 per cent), raw cotton (7 per cent) and timber in logs (4 per cent).

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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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