More Economic Progress Earmarked For CEMAC Zone

L.P.N., Cameroon Tribune (Yaoundé), 25 July 2003

The future promises to be bright for the Central African Economic and Monetary Community following the conclusions of the Board of Governors of the Bank of Central African States, BEAC that met recently in the Chadian capital city of N'djamena. Presided at by its Statutory president, Jean Félix Mamalepot, governor of the bank, the board in its final communiqué observed that the economy of the central African sub region has undergone some progress recording a growth rate of 3.2 per cent as predicted by the International Monetary Fund. The situation, the report said will be consolidated in 2004 when the rates are expected to go up to 4 per cent. Within this context, trade increased by 4.3 per cent and is expected to step up to 6 per cent in 2004.

As far as macro-economic performance is concerned, board members concluded that Gross National Product of the sub region equally increased in real terms in 2002 by 4 per cent and is expected to progress in the same rhythm. These results will be obtained thanks to raw material exported by the zone and the setback in the American dollar, the main currency used for billing exports, the report said. Other determining factors include: efforts at redressing public finance, consolidation of peace in the region, and the maintenance of the rhythm of structural reforms. According to the report, all these will induce vigour in private consumption and resumption in investment in the petroleum sector. Inflation rate is expected to drop from 3 per cent last year to 2.6 in 2003. Taking these and other factors into consideration, the board recommended that member States continue with the cleansing of the economic environment. Other improvements were identified, particularly as concerns currency and credits.