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Innovations In Customs Sector Has Increased State Revenue – Customs GM 

By Sixtus Mbom

The General Manager of Cameroon Customs, Minette Libom Li Likeng, has disclosed that innovations she introduced in the Customs sector has brought about efficiency and increased the revenue of the State. She presented the innovations during the 3rd edition of "Club Management" recently organised by the Advanced Institute of Public Management.

In her presentation on the theme, "Governance Challenges of Cameroon Customs: Elements of An Internal Change", Libom Li Likeng cited three major transformations, which are the pillars of the good results achieved in 2010 where FCFA 528 billion came in as income instead of the FCFA 490 billion projected by the Government. She said this gave an additional FCFA 38 billion, placing the Customs Department as the second highest contributor to the country’s revenue.

The first areas of innovation, she explained, were the creation of a commission for the promotion of ethics and governance to curb corruption and reinforce transparency and responsible behaviour among its staff, and the creation of the Forum Douanes/Entreprise to foster good relationship with economic operators.

The second transformation she presented was the introduction of the use of automatic computerised customs systems, known in French as Systeme Douanier Automatise (SYDONIA) and the global positioning system which they named; Nexus Cameroon Customs.
Libom Li Likeng stated that the implementation of this modern technology helps to curb fraud, insecurity and delays in delivery which is caused by long procedures. These systems, she noted, also enable them to monitor goods in transit.

Then she presented what she called "performance contract" as the third factor that propelled the organisation to its recent achievement. This performance contract which was introduced in 2008 took off with Customs inspectors and as of January 2011, economic operators have been involved in it.  According to the Customs General Manager, it has helped to reduce the time of treatment of files by inspectors from 11 to 3 hours as well as increased the Customs income by 22 percent.

Libom Li Likeng noted that before implementing any changes, the organisation had to tackle problems that have been giving Cameroon Customs a bad name such as, delays, insecurity, and corruption and fraud that was being practised by some of its staff. The Director General of FEICOM, Philippe Akoa, and the Government Delegate to the Yaounde City Council, Gilbert Tsimi Evouna, were guest speakers at the occasion.

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