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Cameroon Seals Deal To Host AfDB Regional Office 

By Sylvester Atemnkeng

Cameroon
will henceforth host the regional office of the African Development Bank, AfDB,
for the Central African sub region.

This
follows an agreement that was signed on July 3, at the Ministry of External
Relations on the establishment of the Regional Development and Business Office
of the African Development Bank for Central Africa.

The
agreement was signed in the presence of members of Government, Heads of Diplomatic
Missions and other authorities.

The
Minister of External Relations, Lejeune Mbella Mbella, signed on behalf of
Cameroon and the Vice President of AfDB, Khaled Shérif, signed on behalf of his
institution.  

While
highlighting the choice of Cameroon as host of the regional hub, Khaled said it
is because the Cameroonian economy is advancing in wealth creation and general
growth.

“For the
past five years, we have seen Gross Domestic Product grow on an average of
about four percent per annum and this is quite an achievement. So, our regional
presence here is to signal that Cameroon is poised to be the country where the
economy will grow substantially over the short and medium term to enhance the
prosperity of the Cameroonian people in particular and the region in general,”
he said.

Khaled
said the Government of Cameroon has generously given a piece of land where
there are already plans of building a complete complex for the AfDB Regional
Office.

He added
that they have a temporary premises in place but the Government has given them
every facility to bring a large number of staff to Cameroon including the
Director General.

“We plan
to be in Cameroon over the long term and to work with Cameroon in any way we
can to enhance development,” he stated.

The
Minister of External Relations, Lejeune Mbella Mbella, said the regional office
will boost inter-regional activities and development. The office, to him, will
collaborate with countries in the sub region and the private sector to
facilitate the implementation of developmental projects.

He also expressed
the gratitude of the Government for the confidence bestowed on them to host the
regional office, stating that Government will not spare any effort in promoting
the activities of AfDB in Cameroon.  
Meanwhile, AfDB actively started supporting development projects in
Cameroon in 1972 with its first project being the sponsoring of the
construction of the airport terminal in Douala. 

Over the
past 25 years, the AfDB has, going by information made public, made available
about 3.4 billion dollar (FCFA 1,973 billion) in development aid to Cameroon
and its people with about 41 operations currently on course, meant to enhance
Cameroon’s development worth about 1.4 billion Euros (FCFA 918 billion). 

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