President Paul Biya announced during his end-of-year speech that the prices of petroleum products on the national market would certainly increase.
The leader said on Sunday, December 31, that despite a reduction, the subsidy remained a financial burden on public coffers.
It cost the State around 640 billion CFA francs (around 1 billion dollars) in 2023, compared to more than 1,000 billion CFA francs (around 1.7 billion dollars) in 2022.
“You should know that to maintain fuel pump prices at their current levels, which are well below those of neighboring countries, the State must make enormous financial sacrifices to subsidize imports of petroleum products,” he said. he declared.
“[…] we will certainly have no choice but to further reduce this subsidy, but we will ensure that the necessary adjustments do not significantly affect the purchasing power of households,” he said. he promised.
The IMF has been asking Cameroon for years to reduce its fuel subsidies, which represent around 2.9% of GDP in 2022.
The organization and the central African nation agreed last November to extend an economic program until 2025.
President Biya also promised to intensify actions put in place to fight corruption and mismanagement of public funds, which he believes are essential to protect public resources.
At the end of September 2023, the inflation rate in Cameroon reached an annual average of 7.8%. The National Statistics Institute attributed the increase to rising food prices and transport costs, with inflation rates of 12.8% and 11.5% respectively.