By Nformi Sonde Kinsai
As the roadshow for the launch and sale of bonds by public offering of the State of Cameroon 2022-2029 ended in Yaounde on May 23, 2022; information from the Directorate General of Treasury and Monetary Cooperation of the Ministry of Finance, indicates that the State has succeeded in raising FCFA 231,378,930,000.
The roadshow that culminated on Yaounde had taken the Minister of Finance, Louis Paul Motazé, and entourage to Libreville in Gabon, Douala in Cameroon, and Brazzaville in Congo.
The bond sales operation that ran from May 16-25 aimed to raised FCFA 200 billion that would enable the Government of Cameroon finance infrastructural development projects in the 10 Regions of the country, as contained in the 2022 state budget.
Going by the total amount raised from subscription by 346 investors (both physical and moral persons) in the 10-day operation, the State, therefore, has an extra sum of FCFA 31,378,930,000.
Speaking about the exercise at the event that was chaired by Minister Motazé, the Director General of the Upline Securities Central Africa, USCA, Michelle Atangana Bikie – who spoke for a Consortium of Brokerage Companies – was optimistic about the operation’s progress.
“We are more than happy and quite sure that we are going to raise the FCFA 200 billion and even more from all the investors within the set time frame. It is a safe investment that brings in returns as high as 6.25 percent per year,” she said.
She noted that “the State of Cameroon had said it is seeking to raise FCFA 200 billion. It equally said if more comes in, it is going to keep it. The State is actually looking for more. Like the Minister of Finance said, the needs are enormous and the FCFA 200 billion is even insufficient.
“So, all interested investors are called upon to come and subscribe. Note should be taken that natural persons are served first before moral institutions like banks. As such, nobody should feel discouraged from coming to subscribe,” Atangana appealed.
The Minister of Finance who represented the State of Cameroon, hailed the massive presence of officials, stating that it was a mark of government solidarity. He said President Paul Biya had, in a decree of January 25, 2022, authorised the Minister of Finance to sell bonds to a maximum of FCFA 350 billion in the financial market in order to pursue ongoing developmental projects or finance new ones as outlined in the 2022 Finance Law.
He said it was in that light that the state is seeking to raise FCFA 200 billion through bond issue by public offering in the Central African Financial Market.
Motazé said he was therefore using the roadshow ceremonies to instill confidence in the subscribers about the win-win partnership between the government and the investors. He noted that the Cameroonian economy has remained resilient amid the global economic downturn.
He said in order to fast-track the emergence of Cameroon by 2035, a new tool labeled the National Development Strategy, NDS30; was put in place and the issuance and sale of the bonds was in line with the guidelines of the NDS30. He recalled that, since 2010 to 2019, refund for bonds issued by the State stands at about FCFA 695 billion.
The money raised shall be distributed for the financing of projects as follows: planning and regional development under MINEPAT, FCFA 3 744 533 583; energy provision under the Ministry of Energy and Water Resources, FCFA 23 477 389 000; road infrastructure under the Ministry of Public Works, FCFA 119 867 525 000; urban development under the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development, FCFA 23 230 376 000; and extension works of PAK development under the Ministry of Transport, FCFA 15 000 000 000. Meanwhile FCFA 14 680 176 417 shall be placed as counterpart funds under MINEPAT for the reconstruction of the Far North, Northwest and Southwest Regions.