In the ordinance amending and supplementing certain provisions of the 2022 finance law, currently being ratified by parliament, the provision for ‘supporting essential prices’ has been increased to 40 billion FCFA , is provided for in the initial finance law.
The government explains that this increase is aimed at fighting inflation. But it does not indicate how the money will be used to achieve this end or which products are concerned. It is however certain that fuels are not concerned. An amount of 480 billion F has already been budgeted to subsidise these products.
In order to stabilise the general level of prices, if not to reverse the trend, the National Institute of Statistics (NIS) suggested to the government, in a report published last May, to implement “additional support measures for businesses and households, both comprehensive and targeted“.
The NIS notes that on average over the last twelve months, the inflation rate is very close to the CEMAC community standard of 3.0% at the end of March 2022 (+2.9%) and has already been exceeded or crossed in six cities. These are Ebolowa (+4.5%), Bamenda (+4.4%), Maroua (+4.3%), Bertoua (+3.9%), Bafoussam (+3.6%) and Garoua (+3.0%). These inflationary pressures, says the NIS, are maintained mainly by the prices of food products including meat, bread, cereals, flour, fish, oil and vegetables.
If nothing is done, the NIS noted, “it is highly likely, under these conditions, that the inflation rate will exceed the 3% threshold retained by the CEMAC [Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea and Chad] in its multilateral surveillance system”.