France and Cameroon have long-standing, intense relations. Our civil cooperation is considerable and covers many sectors: governance, health, education, infrastructure, rural development, the environment, higher education, research and culture.
President Biya made an official visit to France in 2009. He met President Hollande at the Élysée in January 2013 and took part in the Élysée Summit for Peace and Security in Africa in December that year, the Paris Summit for Security in Nigeria in May 2014 and in COP21 in December 2015. President Hollande made a State visit to Yaoundé on 3 July 2015. The previous visit to Cameroon by a French Head of State was Jacques Chirac’s in 1999. Prime Minister Fillon visited Cameroon in 2009, and Minister of Foreign Affairs Laurent Fabius in 2013 and 2015.
Other recent visits to Cameroon include: André Vallini, Minister of State for Development and Francophonie (30 June-1 July 2016); Jean-Marie Le Guen, Minister of State for Development and Francophonie (17 December 2016); and Michel Sapin, Minister of the Economy and Finance (23 December 2016). The Minister of State attached to the Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne, made a visit to Cameroon on 28 and 29 June 2018.
French exports to Cameroon stood at €537 million in 2017, and imports from the country totalled €476 million the next year. The French economic presence in Cameroon is highly diversified, thanks to some 100 subsidiaries and some 200 businesses belonging to French nationals. The French foreign direct investment (FDI) stock in Cameroon stood at €796 million in 2016, down 3.5% on the previous year.
Cultural, scientific and technical cooperation
Since 2006, our cooperation has been in large part based on the debt relief and development contract (C2D), which refinances instalments due on the debt through grants. The third such contract was signed on 30 June 2016, for an amount of €611 million over 8 years, split between the following fields: agriculture and rural development (€182 million); infrastructure and urban development (€156.5 million); budget assistance (€185 million, part of which will be dedicated to education); governance support (€9.8 million) and cross-cutting and partnership support (€16.38 million). There is a reserve of €61.8 million which will be allocated during the mid-term review.
The Institut Français of Cameroon, which has sites in Yaoundé and Douala, is the cornerstone of French cooperation in the cultural, linguistic, academic and research fields.
France has important security and defence cooperation with Cameroon, focusing on training. This is dispensed for example in regionally oriented national schools such as the Yaoundé international staff college (ESIG).
Updated: 2 November 2018