This is the result of a survey carried out by Traffic, a non-governmental organisation monitory trade in forest and wildlife.
The Traffic report shows that illicit trade in timber is a real scourge to Cameroon’s economy. The report is fruit of a “serious and meticulous investigation” carried out in the various timber exploitation areas throughout the country including other shady activities linked to processing and exportation.
In the report on exploitation and marketing of timber in Cameroon, the NGO whose mission is to ensure that the trade does not threaten conservation of natural resources, says every year the public treasury comes up short of 7.5 percent of the country’s global income on forest exploitation. It says the forestry sector however still manages to contribute 4.5 billion FCFA or 4% of the gross domestic product (GDP) in export earnings.
In 2013, a study by the International Centre for Forest Research (CIFOR) showed “only 39% of the timber harvested in Cameroon is produced through the formal chain, while 61% is produced within informal channels where controls and different taxes are non-existent “.
The CIFOR survey concluded that the current forestry legislation contains major weaknesses such as the absence of a legal framework for small-scale forest exploitation.
The revision of the forest law, according to experts, could improve governance in which has the potential to create approximately 13,000 people for more than 100 billion FCFA of annual revenue. Four years later, the problems are far from being handled.