Collapse of the tomato sector in Cameroon President Maurice Kamto sounds the alarm

DECLARATION ON THE RISK OF COLLAPSE OF THE TOMATO INDUSTRY IN CAMEROON IN FACE OF GOVERNMENT'S INABILITY TO TAKE NECESSARY SUPPORT MEASURES

The Cameroon Renaissance Movement party (CRM) leader, President Maurice Kamto reacts strongly to the tragedy of actors in the tomato sector, Cameroonvoice noted on reading a press release made public by this politician on Tuesday

Cameroon’s economy is more than ever before in great difficulty as a result of incompetence, endemic corruption and looting by certain senior officials of the country, aggravated today by the Covid-19 crisis and the absence of support measures of the State, contrary to what is observed in other organized and well managed countries.
The Cameroon Renaissance Movement (CRM) expresses its concern, notably for the future of the tomato sector in our country. In fact, for several weeks, this sector has experienced a critical situation marked by the loss of two-thirds (2/3) of its market, representing the market in the CEMAC zone; the collapse of the price of the 10Kg crate of tomatoes, which fell from 3.500 FCFA to 750 FCFA on the local market; the destruction of part of the national production, a consequence of the producers’ shortfall; leading to severe constraint between producers and their creditors.
Faced with this dramatic situation, no government support until now has been provided to producers nor to other segments of this sector. The future therefore appears very bleak for this sector, which is of paramount importance to national economy.
If nothing is done, Cameroon will be exposed to the outright collapse of this tomato sector. Such a prospect would lead to a rise in unemployment in the main production areas of the West, the Center, Adamawa and the Northwest regions. If the Government remains in its usual indifference, our country will sustainably compromise the usual income from the marketing of tomatoes, that is, 720 billion per year on the foreign market (CEMAC zone) and 140 billion on the domestic market.
In this context where tomato producers are abandoned to their sad fate by the Government, we must remember the importance and usefulness of the tomato processing plant, the SCAN, created under President Ahmadou AHIDJO, located in FOUMBOT, whose equipment has since been left in ruins by the current regime. This regime will have to explain one day to Cameroonians why it decided to destroy the national industry, factory after factory, the agro-industrial and tourism infrastructure one after the other.
The CRM demands that urgent measures be taken to save the tomato sector in our country. Cameroon, more than ever before, cannot afford the luxury of exposing tens of thousands of producers to unemployment and millions of Cameroonians depending on this sector to poverty.

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Yaounde the July 2020
The National President Maurice KAMTO

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