Cameroon Development Corporation (CDC), a public agro-industrial company operating oil palm and rubber tree plantations in the South-West region of the country, should soon move into the production of maize, cassava or pepper. The top management of this company, 2nd employer in the country after the State, has just been instructed as such by the Board of CDC.
Maize, cassava and pepper are put forward as part of the diversification of CDC’s production because, as underlined by the communique issued at the end of this board meeting which occurred on 9 and 10 August, these products not only have “a short season”, but also have a “direct profitability”.
This choice, we learned, should enable CDC to quickly sort out its cash flow, which is currently in “a critical condition”. This, as highlighted by the Board, because of the sudden drop in the international prices for rubber and in palm oil prices on the local market.
As an example, the company explains, while it was sold between FCfa 2,500 and 3,000 per kilogram until 2012, the price of rubber on the international market is nowadays peaking at between FCfa 700 and 800 only.
Concurrently, we learned, while the production cost per litre of palm oil is FCfa 602 at CDC, this agro-industrial unit has to sell the same quantity of product on the local market at FCfa 450 per litre, the price approved by the public authorities “since 2008”. Hence the “huge losses” registered for some time by this company.