Preparations are intensifying in Yaounde ahead of Cameroon Economic, industrial and commercial trade fair dubbed JEICAC to hold in China next month. China is the leading Cameroon’s economic partner with President Paul Biya’s recent visit in March this year during which a series of economic partnership were signed.Shawn-Nathan EPANG
Some 1,000 Cameroonian including industrialist, start-uppers, government departments are expected to participant in the event. To the build-up to the September 22-27 tentative date fixed for the event, the Coordination unit of the project has been multiplying sensitisation meetings to encourage Cameroonian business operators to embrace the vast business and industrial opportunities China offers.
Jean Marie Aboganena, General Coordinator told participants in a sensitisation meeting at the Yaounde Chamber of Commerce on Thursday that China is the best economy in the world with up-to-date technology, equipment that will help boost Cameroon’s growth. “If Cameroon wants to grow, we should go to China to meet and conclude partnerships with Chinese investors, companies to come and build industries in Cameroon in order to develop our country and produce Cameroonian products,” he stated.
The economic, industrial and commercial trade fair scheduled to hold in the Chinese Province of Henan, he said, will serve as an opportunity to promote Cameroon’s image in China while learning from the Asian giant.
The trade fair will feature amongst other activities, the exhibitions of Made in Cameroon products, B2B meetings, conferences, visits to industries and cultural evenings. Mr Aboganena said all sectors of the economy are involved ranging from agriculture, livestock and fisheries, transport, water and energy, tourism, housing etc.
Apart from reinforcing bilateral cooperation ties between both countries that dates back to 1971, the forum will enable Cameroonian enterprises to acquire equipment at just 30 per cent of the cost while the remaining 70 per cent is paid monthly after the fifth months of the setting up of the factory.
According to one of the local entrepreneurs on the starting block for the trip, Leopold Tomo, who owns a local food processing company in Soa, located in the outskirts of the capital city, China is comparatively the best for Cameroon to partner with for its industrial ambitions. To him, machines and technology can easily be acquired in China than in Europe and the United States of America.
It should be recalled that President Xi Jinping described President Paul Biya as “a senior African leader and an old friend of China,” during his last visit to the Asian country in March 2018. President Xi said Cameroon is an important partner of China in Africa. The two countries have respected each other, treated each other equally and supported each other on issues concerning core interest and major concerns since the two forged diplomatic ties 47 years ago, President Xi said. President Paul Biya was the first African president to visit China this year and the first foreign Head of State to visit after the annual sessions of China’s National People’s Congress (NPC) and the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC).
The Chinese leader called on China and Cameroon to maintain exchanges at all levels and continue to support each other on core interests and major concerns. China supports Cameroon in choosing its own path of development and speeding up its process of industrialization, said Xi. China encourages the two countries to expand trade and enhance cooperation in major areas, and more Chinese enterprises to invest there, he said.
It is thus within this framework that a group of Cameroonian business operators, government departments will be heading to China to promote business opportunities in Cameroon and strike deals with Chinese investors.