Cameroon flag Cameroon: Economic and Political Overview

Foreign trade figures of Cameroon

Foreign Trade in Figures

Cameroon is open to international trade. It is a member of the Commonwealth, the CEMAC (Central African Economic and Monetary Community), the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS), and has signed the African Continental Free Trade Agreement. The ratio of trade to GDP is around 33% (World Bank, 2020).

Its main export commodities are fuel (oil, gas), minerals (coal, aluminium), wood, cocoa, cotton, and rubber. Cameroon mainly imports mineral fuels and oil, food (rice, wheat, fish, etc.), medicines, and manufactured products (vehicles, machinery, electrical and electronic equipment). Cameroon’s main export partners are China, Italy, the Netherlands, France, Spain and India. Its main import suppliers are China, France, Nigeria, the Netherlands, Thailand, the United States and Togo. Cameroon signed a free trade agreement with the European Union in August 2016. For some years now, Eastern Asian countries (especially China, Japan, India, and Thailand) have been reinforcing their trade ties with Cameroon.

Cameroon's trade balance is structurally negative. According to WTO, in 2020, Cameroon recorded a trade deficit of nearly USD 2 billion. The same source stated that the country imported USD 5.4 billion worth of goods against USD 3.4 billion for exports. Service exports generated 1.55 billion USD while service imports amounted to 2.24 billion USD.

 
Foreign Trade Values 20162017201820192020
Imports of Goods (million USD) 6,5455,2475,6565,6465,364
Exports of Goods (million USD) 3,3063,2333,8034,0843,385
Imports of Services (million USD) n/a2,3802,6412,7722,241
Exports of Services (million USD) n/a1,8412,0052,1031,552

Source: World Trade Organisation (WTO) ; Latest available data

Foreign Trade Indicators 20162017201820192020
Foreign Trade (in % of GDP) 43.241.243.044.936.6
Trade Balance (million USD) -237-227-533-737n/a
Trade Balance (Including Service) (million USD) -829-723-1,121-1,355n/a
Imports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change) -1.5-0.68.110.60.4
Exports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change) -0.6-1.62.35.0-6.7
Imports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP) 24.022.623.724.721.2
Exports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP) 19.218.619.320.215.4

Source: World Bank ; Latest available data

Foreign Trade Forecasts 20212022 (e)2023 (e)2024 (e)2025 (e)
Volume of exports of goods and services (Annual % change) -3.118.111.910.610.1
Volume of imports of goods and services (Annual % change) 5.610.24.75.04.2

Source: IMF, World Economic Outlook ; Latest available data

Note: (e) Estimated Data

 
International Economic Cooperation
Cameroon is open to a large extent to international trade. It is a member of the Commonwealth as well as that of the Franc Zone. In order to facilitate trade relations, these countries have signed treaties and agreements to simplify trade. In this way Cameroon has signed agreement with the European Union.

It should also be noted that Cameroon also has trade agreements with countries such as Tunisia, Nigeria and China.

 
 
 
 
 

To go further, check out our service Import Export Flows.

 

Main Services

Source: United Nations Statistics Division, 2021. Because of rounding, the sum of the percentages may be smaller/greater than 100%.

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Latest Update: April 2022