The next generation of Cameroonian’s may only get read it in books that their beloved Cameroon was once referred to as “Africa in Miniature”, a statement which is fast being forgotten right before our very eyes. The multi mineral rich central African country is gradually being relegated to the back as though it had nothing at all to show for.
The economy of the country is on a fast speed downstairs, with its current employment rate at less than 7%. Small and the Major companies have gone out of business while others have simply gone bankrupt. The economic downfall has been blamed on the Socio-Political crises which has hit the country’s two out of its ten regions for close to three years now and counting.
The country which once occupied the seat of glory in football in the continent was unfortunately, stripped of its hosting right, denying it the privileged to host the 2019 AFCON Soccer Game. CAF Executive after several inspections visits, concluded the country could not host the tournament due to lack of readiness in its infrastructure and the security threats as a result of the crises in its two regions.
THE CHINESE STEALING BY TRICK DIPLOMACY
Cameroon is one amongst other countries which have fallen in the Chinese debt-trap diplomacy. Sri Lanka late last year handed over a port to companies owned by the Chinese government after it failed to pay its debt amounting to $1billion. Similarly, Djibouti, which is home to the US military base in Africa might cede control of another key port to a Beijing-linked company for the same reason of not being able to pay its debt.
China’s trick on African countries is working so well, from it predatory loan practices, and corrupt deals that mire the nations in debt and undercut their sovereignty, denying them their long-term, self sustaining growth. Many countries with the like of Cameroon is certain, will not be able to completely pay its debt owed to China even in the next 50years. Although China has close some of the continents infrastructure gap, it’s approach has however led to mounting debts and few, if any, jobs in most countries.
HOW MUCH MONEY IS CAMEROON OWING CHINA?
Cameroon find itself amongst the top 10 African countries owing China gruesome amount of money just between 2007 and 2018. In a recent meeting between Cameroon’s president Paul Biya and Yang Jiechi, special representative of China’s president Xi Jimping on January 18, 2019. Many news channels claim that China has cancelled all debts owed by Cameroon. Within a period of 10years, Cameroon has acquire an estimated FCFA 3.885billion of debt from the Asian giant.
What % of Debt has China forgiven Cameroon of?
China has not cancelled all of Cameroon’s debt. According to sources at the ministry of finance, China has only cancelled 45Billion of Cameroon’s debt to the country. The said figure amounts to just 2% of the total debt Cameroon currently owes China.
The decision to relive Cameroon of its debts comes as a promise made to Paul Biya in 2016 by his Chinese peer during his state visit he made in China on March 2018.
What others are saying
Others sources have it that China might be suspending billions worth of infrastructure projects in Cameroon because of the Cameroon government’s inability to meet its contractual obligations. And the affected project might include funding for the Douala-Yaounde dual carriage way and Kribi-Lolabe highways. This analysis points out just Cameroon’s debt with China. Not withstanding, we shall bring to you other countries Cameroon has borrowed money from or is owing, including the WorldBank.