Cameroon – Economy: 45 000 used vehicles imported since January 2016

Written by Deckson N.

The number of imported used cars is growing in Cameroon.

According to the Société Générale de Surveillance (SGS), in 2012, 39 093 used vehicles were imported, against 17,540 in 2006. That is a doubling of quantities in six years. In this 201, the number has already increased significantly. “According to the figures of the Single Window for Foreign Trade (GUCE) the number is 45 000 used vehicles imported from the port of Douala,” says the Economie Daily published October 18, 2016.

In 2012, the newspaper said, the customs inspector, Adoum Mamat, then head of the GUCE office, indicated that the Cameroon Customs could take the sum of 34 billion FCFA of these operations under various fees for import  into the Cameroonian territory of used vehicles, which in 2012 represented about 0.28% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), i.e. 12 800 billion FCFA. Cars that enter fraudulently are not taken into account.

On the contrary, in recent years, the number of imported new vehicles experienced a dramatic drop in the purchase. It went from 7000 in 2010 to 5000 only in 2014. The customs administration announced a drop was expected in 2015. “It was counting on 4500 and new vehicles. And estimated the number of used cars to be around 55 000 per year this year against only 5,000 for new cars. Yet it a few years ago, a decree was signed to deter importers who buy used vehicles, “it said.

The decree prohibited the importation of vehicles over 20 years old, according to Arnold Wato, focal point assistant at GUCE. To facilitate the importation of new vehicles, the Government of Cameroon had also inserted a new provision in 2011. This budget law foresaw a 30% reduction in customs duties for new vehicles under 7 years.

Apart from the vehicles, the paper said, new tires also benefiton importation of a 10% reduction on the taxable value. This reduction will enable Cameroon to import much of new vehicles and not used ones. This, in order to significantly reduce the number of traffic accidents on the roads, because “it is established that a significant number of accidents and most accidents are caused by old vehicles” argued the Minister of Finance (MINFI), Alamine Ousmane Mey, at the time.

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Deckson N.

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