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flag Cameroon Cameroon: Selling and Buying

In this page: Market Access Procedures | Reaching the Consumers | Distributing a Product | Organizing Goods Transport | Identifying a Supplier

 

Market Access Procedures

International Conventions
Member of OECD
Party to the Kyoto Protocol
Party to the Montreal Protocol on Substances That Deplete the Ozone Layer
Main International Economic Cooperation
Cameroon is open to a large extent to international trade. It is a member of the Commonwealth as well as that of the Franc Zone. Foreign trade makes up around 50% of its GDP. Its 3 main export partners are : Spain, Italy and France. In order to facilitate trade relations, these countries have signed treaties and agreements to simplify trade. In this way Cameroon has signed agreement with the European Union.

 

On the other hand, it should also be noted that Cameroon also has trade agreements with countries such as Tunisia, Nigeria and China.

Non Tariff Barriers
There are three categories of imported products: free products which do not incur any restriction, products requiring a technical visa or a certificate of conformity from a competent Ministry (Health, Security....) and products which are prohibited in the entire territory of Cameroon. However, every import must be controlled before its loading. This control relates to quality, quantity and price.
Customs Duties and Taxes on Imports
Cameroon is part of the Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa (CEMAC) that has the following countries as its members : Cameroon, Congo, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Central African Republic and Chad. Countries belonging to the CEMAC are acquitted of duties and taxes as defined in the Common Exterior Tariff (TEC), whatever may be the entry point in the CEMAC. Custom duty rates are applicable according to the category of the imported product :
- primary necessary goods : category I, 0%
- raw materials and equipment goods : category II, 10%
- Intermediary and miscellaneous goods : category III, 20%
- Fast-moving consumer goods : category IV, 30%.
To determine the category of your product, you can consult the Customs Nomenclature in force in Cameroon (conforming to the Harmonized System).


Customs Classification
Cameroon is part of the Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa (CEMAC) that has the following countries as its members : Cameroon, Congo, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Central African Republic and Chad. Countries belonging to the CEMAC are acquitted of duties and taxes as defined in the Common Exterior Tariff (TEC), whatever may be the entry point in the CEMAC.

 

Custom duty rates are applicable according to the category of the imported product :

- primary necessary goods : category I, 0%
- raw materials and equipment goods : category II, 10%
- Intermediary and miscellaneous goods : category III, 20%
- Fast-moving consumer goods : category IV, 30%.

To determine the category of your product, you can consult the Customs Nomenclature in force in Cameroon (conforming to the Harmonized System).

Import Procedures
The importer or his representative submits a demand for an Attestation of Verification to Import (AVI) to the SGS, latest by the time of validation of the manifestation in the SYDONIA system. This demand is accompanied by the following documents and information : a copy of the ID (Interpretative Document); a copy of the Bill of Lading or AWB; a final invoice, a packing list; a freight invoice, a local insurance certificate; a customs clearance, number of the cargo manifest, a voucher or evidence of an eventual exemption accompanied by a provisional customs certificate; a phytosanitary certificate or other required technical service documents.

The SGS, then grants within a maximum limit of 8 hours, a final AVI, an original and 2 copies, to the importer. The delivery of the final AVI is done directly, without the prerequisite delivery of a provisional AVI. After verification, the inspector gives the user three copies of the declaration : a grey copy, a blue copy and a yellow copy. These verifications are done within a maximum time limit of 6 hours in the case where there is no contesting of taxation or other declared elements.

The importer presents these documents to the SGS which affixes a security sticker and a dry stamp on the blue copy and transfers it to the bank for depositing. The SGS has to address the above documents to the different concerned banks at least 3 times a day. After encashment, the bank delivers a receipt and the blue copy to the user, transmits the yellow copy to the SGS and keeps the grey copy with itself. After seeing the blue copy and the receipt, the concerned Inspector delivers the release warrant for the merchandise after the verification of usage.

 
 
For Further Information
Cameroon Customs
Business Portal for Africa

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Reaching the Consumers

Marketing Opportunities

Consumer Behavior
The demand for drinks is principally that for beer and in second place for fizzy drinks. Since the devaluation in 1994, the consumption of sweetened condensed milk, milk powder and yogurt has risen faster than the demographic rate. The basic Cameroonian diet consists of starchy foods and cereals. Even though Cameroon has a large variety of food products as compared to its neighboring central-African countries, it has a deficit in meat products such as those from cattle or fishing.
Consumer Profile and Purchasing Power
It is impossible to find a statistical study done by efficient organizations, with the objective to find the consumer profile in Cameroon. So it is wise to consider the important imports of Cameroon as those with the most influence on the national economy. The main imports of Cameroon are the following: skins/leather ; milk products ; sugar-based products ; meat ; fruits and vegetables, oil and vegetable fats.
Consumers Associations
ACDIC , Citizens Association for the Protection of Collective Rights
Main Advertising Agencies
Creation Plus. Graphism-Printing-Large format digital printing
FGC: Web design-graphic designing-audio-video production-E.marketing
Mc Cann Eriksson. International Communications Group

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Distributing a Product

Organizations in the Retail Sector
Cameroon railway transport

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Organizing Goods Transport

Main Useful Means of Transport
The transport in Cameroon is mostly by trucks. Thus, a difference is seen among the road vehicles and the lorry-trailer combinations. The  road vehicles have the driver's cabin and the truck box on the same frame. On the other hand, the lorry-truck vehicles are assembled vehicles; a road tractor and a tractor-trailer for example. The transport of goods is also undertaken by the rail thanks to the Camrail company. But the poor state of the tracks and the small number of working lines are a handicap for Rail transport.
Ports
Autonomous Port Organizations
Airports
International Airport of Douala
International Airport of Garoua
Airport of Maroua-Salak
International Airport of Yaounde
Sea Transport Organizations
National Port Authority
Air Transport Organizations
The National Airlines Company
Road Transport Organizations
Directorate of Road Transport of the Cameroon Ministry of Transport
Decentralized Services Department of the Cameroon Ministry of Transport
Rail Transport Organizations
The Cameroon Railway Company

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Identifying a Supplier

Type of Production
The Cameroonian industry is essentially based on the Heavy Industries. Production is oriented towards oil-producing products, refinement, aluminum production, food-processing, textiles, wood industry and ship repairing.

Business Directories

Multi-sector Directories
Cameroon White and Yellow Pages - Find businesses in Cameroon.
Cameroon Phone Book - Cameroon's business directory.
Cameroon Search - Business directory in Cameroon.
Cameroon Zoom - Cameroon's business directory.
 
 
Manufacturers Associations of the Main Industries
1 professional associations listed for Cameroon.
 
Trade Agencies and Their Representations Abroad
Cameroon Chamber of Commerce
Enterprises Federation
Importers and Exporters Labor Union of Cameroon
Inter-Managerial Group of Cameroon
 
 

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Last Updates: October 2014