France and Cameroon


Political relations

France and Cameroon have long-standing, extensive relations. Our civil cooperation is considerable and covers many sectors: governance, health, education, infrastructure, rural development, the environment, higher education, research and culture.

French presence

Consulate General: Douala

Consular section: Yaoundé

French community in Cameroon: 5 676 people registered (2021)

Cameroonian community in France (people with a residence permit): 66,068 (2021).


  • President Paul Biya took part in the Summit for a New Global Financing Pact on 22 and 23 June in Paris.
  • President Emmanuel Macron made an official visit to Yaoundé on 26 July 2022, during which he met with President Biya, announced French support of €20 million to fight food insecurity and took part in a discussion between French and Cameroonian civil society.
  • President Biya met with President Macron in Lyon in October 2019, on the sidelines of the Sixth Replenishment Conference for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, and also participated in the Paris Peace Forum in November 2019. He participated in COP 21 in Paris in December 2015, and made an official visit to France in 2009.
  • In October 2019, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs Jean-Yves Le Drian visited Cameroon and met with President Paul Biya.
  • On 3 July 2015, President François Hollande made a state visit to Yaoundé.
  • In 2013 and 2015, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development Laurent Fabius visited Cameroon.
  • In 2009, Prime Minister François Fillon visited Cameroon.

Economic relations

Cameroon is France’s leading trading partner in Central Africa, excluding oil. France is Cameroon’s second-largest trading partner.

In 2019, after five years of lowering, French exports to Cameroon rose again. In 2021, they reached €541.6 million, while French imports from Cameroon stood at €259.5 million.

The French economic presence in Cameroon is highly diversified, thanks to some 100 subsidiaries and some 200 businesses belonging to French nationals. It is significant in the areas of oil production, wood and agrifood industry, public works, banking, insurance, transport and logistics and retail.

With a total of €1.1 billion in 2020, French foreign direct investment (FDI) stock in Cameroon is the second-largest in Central Africa, after Congo (€2.8 billion). French investments have remained stable above €1 billion since 2017, after several years of decline.

Cultural, scientific and technical cooperation

In 2020 (the latest available data), France’s official development assistance to Cameroon reached €147.9 million, including €94.5 million in bilateral official development assistance.

Cameroon is one of the leading beneficiaries of financing from the Agence Française de Développement (AFD). Since 2006, our cooperation has been 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.

More generally, France is providing its support to the fight against food insecurity, furthering the decentralization process in Cameroon and to financial governance. It is particularly focused on the fragile regions experiencing security crises.

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. Three Alliance Française branches dispense these activities in Garoua, and there are also branches in Ngaoundéré, Maroua, Dschang and Bamenda.

Other cooperation

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 War College (ESIG) and the International Security Forces Training School (EIFORCES).

France is committed to civilian populations in Cameroon, providing €3.9 million in support for humanitarian assistance and stabilization projects in 2021. French humanitarian assistance financed projects in the far north of the country to support vulnerable populations who are victims of insecurity caused by Boko Haram, and in the north-western and south-western regions (NOSO).

Stabilization projects have also been carried out to support efforts to further the decentralization process, especially in the NOSO, support local civil societies, foster security and civil protection in the far north and fight against gender-based violence and promote maternal health.

Updated: 20 September 2023