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IMF Reaches Staff-Level Agreement with Cameroon on 4th Reviews of Extended Credit Facility

IMF staff and the Cameroonian authorities have reached staff-level agreement on economic policies to conclude the fourth reviews of the three-year program under the ECF and EFF arrangements. Cameroon will have access to SDR 55.2 million (about US$73.8 million) in financing once the review is formally completed by the IMF Executive Board in late June 2023.

  • The economic recovery that started following the COVID-19 shock continues. Growth is estimated at 3.7 percent in 2022 and projected to reach 4 percent in 2023 while inflation is expected to moderate from 7.3 percent at end-2022 to 5.9 percent at end-2023.

  • The authorities are preparing a revised budget for 2023. They have underscored the need to create fiscal space for productive investment and social spending by mobilizing domestic revenues and improving spending efficiency, while strengthening fiscal discipline.

Washington, DC: An International Monetary Fund (IMF) team, led by Ms. Cemile Sancak, Mission Chief for Cameroon, visited Yaoundé during May 4-17 to discuss progress on reforms and the authorities’ policy priorities in the context of n the fourth reviews of the three-year program supported by the Extended Credit Facility (ECF) and the Extended Fund Facility (EFF) arrangements. The arrangement was approved by the IMF Executive Board for a total amount of SDR 483 million (about US$689.5 million) on July 29, 2021.

At the conclusion of this visit, Ms. Sancak issued the following statement:

“The mission has reached staff-level agreement with the Cameroonian authorities on the economic and financial policies that could support the approval of the fourth reviews of the program under the ECF and EFF arrangements. Completion of the fourth reviews by the IMF Executive Board, scheduled in late June 2023, would enable the disbursement of SDR 55.2 million (about US$73.8 million).

“The overall fiscal deficit declined to 1.1 percent of GDP in 2022 from 3 percent in 2021 while the non-oil primary deficit increased to 4 percent of GDP in 2022 from 3.9 percent in 2021. Non-oil revenue performance improved substantially in 2022, due to both tax and non-tax revenues. In terms of program performance, the non-oil primary deficit target under the program was met, though a substantial part of the subsidies for petroleum products for 2022, which was validated only in 2023, will be integrated into the revised 2023 budget. The temporary and minor breaches of the target on non-accumulation of external payment arrears point to the need to improve liquidity management and limit spending through exceptional procedures. Public debt at end-2022 reached 46.5 percent of GDP, declining slightly from 46.8 percent of GDP at end-2021.

“Medium-term prospects remain favorable provided reforms continue, and the external environment is supportive. Economic growth is expected to increase modestly to 4 percent while inflation is expected to moderate from 7.3 percent year-on-year at end-2022 to 5.9 percent at end-2023. The authorities are preparing a revised budget for 2023 and have expressed their continued commitment to maintaining macroeconomic stability and to further reducing the overall fiscal deficit to 1 percent of GDP and the non-oil primary fiscal deficit to 2.4 percent of GDP in 2023.

“The IMF team met with the Prime Minister, Joseph Dion Ngute, the Minister and Secretary General of the Presidency, Ferdinand Ngoh Ngoh, the Minister of Finance, Louis Paul Motaze, the Minister of the Economy, Planning and Regional Development, Alamine Ousmane Mey, the National Director of the BEAC, Emmanuel Nkoa Ayissi, and other senior officials. The mission also met with representatives of development partners, the diplomatic community, the private sector, and civil society.

“The team wishes to thank the Cameroonian authorities for their excellent cooperation and for the frank and constructive dialogue.”

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