With Cameroon turned into a vast construction site, the demand for cement, an important building material, is surging steadily.
Cameroon has, over the past few years, been transformed into a permanent construction site. The Head of State’s Greater Achievement programme prioritised infrastructural development. The giant structural projects coupled with the infrastructure linked to the organisation of the 2019 African Cup of Nations in Cameroon have invariably impacted the cement market in the country. Some of the giant projects that have contributed to the increase in the demand of cement are spread in different sectors of the national economy. The report of the Ministry of the Economy, Planning and Regional Development, which indicated an estimated 10 per cent increase in the demand of the precious building material cites the construction of dams (Lom Pangar, Memve’ele, Natchtigale due to begin in July etc) among the projects that has induced the surge. The ongoing construction of motorways in some parts of the country is another reason for the upsurge in the demand of cement. The Yaounde-Douala motorway whose first phase is at over 60 per cent executed, the Kribi-Lolabe motorway nearing completion as well as Kribi-Edea motorway have all been taken into consideration as the major projects that are having or would have a significant impact on the demand of cement. Other road infrastructure like the 52km Babadjou-Bamenda road, 205km Mora-Dabanga-Kousseri road amongst others are also nonnegligible. Perhaps the ongoing construction of infrastructure (stadia, hotels and access roads) linked to the 2019 African Cup of Nations (AFCON 2019) to be hosted by Cameroon in five different cities (Garoua, Bafoussam, Limbe, Douala and Yaounde) is a major contribution to the estimated 10 per cent rise in demand. Sporting infrastructure such as the 50,000- seat capacity Japoma stadium in Douala, the 60,000-seat Olembe Omnisport stadium, the rehabilitation of the Douala Reunification stadium and the Roumdé Adjia stadium in Garoua and training grounds will certainly gulp thousands of tons of cement. Low-cost Housing projects in the eight regions of the country as well as the construction of reference hospitals in some parts of the country and other projects within the framework of the Threeyear Emergency Plan are also another contributing factor. Cameroon’s cement production masterminded by four companies presently stands at 4.2 million tons per year. Projections made by the Ministry of Mines, Industry and Technological Development and concurred by MINEPAT indicate that the demand for cement will reach 8 million tons in 2018 as against 3 million tons in previous national demand.