Extent and Impact of Vegetable Oils Import Surges in Cameroon

The trade liberalization has resulted in massive food imports into Cameroon and this is affecting the livelihoods of the farmers, industries, traders, and service providers of the imported foods. Cameroon was selected by FAO as one of the 12 country case studies on the impact of food import surges in developing countries with the overall objective of studying and analyzing the impact of the most prevalent and frequent surge commodities (poultry meat, rice, and vegetable oils) on stakeholders. The methods and analytical approach used for this study are those for WTO Safeguards investigation as outlined in the FAO working document, “Extent and impact of food import surges in developing countries: An analytical approach and research methodology for country case studies”. Information for the study was obtained from both secondary sources and from primary sources (stakeholders’ survey). Quantitatively and qualitatively, import surges occurred and are occurring for vegetable oils in Cameroon. There were relatively low levels of these commodities imports into Cameroon until 1999-2004 at which time the import of vegetable oils increased by 366.3 %. Palm oil accounted for 55 % of vegetable oils imports. Domestic and exogenous factors contributed to the commodity import surge in Cameroon. A potentially negative correlation between the movements in import volumes and movement in domestic price, per unit import value, domestic production, and profits, key injury indicators were noted. Factors other than imports contributed to the injuries. Cameroon’s policy responses to the surges and injuries were its main trade policy instrument, the tariff, creation of ad hoc committee to determine the level of production shortages and quotas to be imported and instituted reference price.

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 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2018-01-22

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