Investments in Cameroon are governed by several texts. It is possible to elucidate in a non-exhaustive way:

Law No. 2002/004 of April 19, 2002, amended by Law No. 2004/020 of 22 July 2004 and by Ordinance No. 2009/01 of 13 May 2009 relating to the Investment Charter: this Law sets out the framework for promoting investments in accordance with the overall development strategy aimed at improving, sustaining growth, job creation in all sectors and the social well-being of populations. It also defines the respective roles of the state and the private sector in economic matters;

Law No. 2006/016 of December 2006 relating to the fiscal regime for public-private partnership contracts: this law provides tax facilities to businesses in the context of the implementation of major infrastructure projects in partnership with a public entity;

  • Law No. 2013/004 of April 18, 2013, amended by Law 2017/015 of 12 July 2017 laying down incentives for private investment in the Republic of Cameroon: this law aims to promote and attract productive investment to develop activities geared towards enhancing strong, sustainable and shared economic growth, as well as employment.

The implementation of this law is framed by regulatory instruments, including:

  • ARRETE No.00000366/MINFI/SG/DGI/DGD of 19 November 2013 specifying the modalities for the implementation of the tax and customs benefits of Law No. 2013/004 of 18 April 2013 laying down incentives for private investment in the Republic of Cameroon.
  • Order No.004263/MINMIDT of 03 July 2014 setting out the composition of the approval file to the benefits provided by Law No. 2013/004 of 18 April 2013 laying down incentives for private investment in the Republic of Cameroon.

Law No. 2013/011 of 16 December 2013 governing economic zones in the Republic of Cameroon: this law sets out the general framework for the creation, development and management of economic zones, as well as the admission procedures for companies wishing to settle therein. It is a tool to encourage and/or promote investment, exports, competitiveness, employment, economic growth and land use;

Ordinance No. 90/001 of 29 January 1990 relating to the Industrial Free Zone regime, ratified by Law 90/023 of 10 August 1990: this law offers tax and customs benefits to exports (including exemption from tariffs on exported processed products) and imports (particularly exemption from import duties and customs duties on products destined for processing);

The law of 25 April 2019, on the new oil code: this law aims to promote oil operations throughout Cameroon. It sets out the modalities for the exploration, research, exploitation and transport of hydrocarbons, determines the legal, tax and customs and foreign exchange regime of oil operations, and sets the duties and obligations related to oil operations;

Law No. 2016/017 of December 14, 2016 relating to Mining Code: This law governs mining activities and promotes investment in the mining sector in the Republic of Cameroon. It aims to promote and encourage the research and exploitation of the mineral resources necessary for Cameroon’s economic and social development and the fight against poverty;

Law No. 2012/006 of April 19, 2012 relating to The Cameroon Gas Code: This law governs the downstream gas sector, which includes, among others, the transport, distribution, processing, storage, import, export and sale of natural gas and its derivatives on the national territory. The aim of the law is to promote the development of the downstream gas sector in Cameroon.

  • Revised Uniform Act on Commercial companies and Economic Interest Group of 30 January 2014 adopted on 30/01/2014
  • Law No. 2010/001 of April 13, 2010 amended by Law No. 2015/010 of July 16, 2015 promoting small and medium-sized enterprises in Cameroon
  • Interministerial Circular No. 001 MINJUSTICE-MINFI-MINPMEESA of May 30, 2012: related to the procedure before the CFCE
  • Instruction 004/CAB/PM of 25 May 2012 on the procedures for starting businesses in Cameroon
  • Instruction No. 001/CAB/PM of 13 June 2016 on the procedures for setting up online businesses in Cameroon.
  • Uniform Act on Commercial Law of December 15, 2010
  • Law No. 2015/018/ of 21 December 2015 governing commercial activity;
  • Law No 2016/004 of 18 April 2016 governing foreign trade in Cameroon and its decree No 2017/6523/ Pm of 07 June 2017 setting out the terms of application of Law No 2016/004 of 18 April 2016 governing foreign trade in Cameroon
  • Law No. 2014/006 April 23, 2014 Governing Factoring Activity In Cameroon
  • Law 96/117 of 5 August 1996 on standardization;
  • Law No. 98/012 of 14 July 1998 on the dumping and marketing of subsidized import products;
  • Law 98/013 of 14 July 1998 relating to competition.

Governed by law 2013/004 of 18 April 2013 laying down incentives for private investment in the Republic of Cameroon, these incentives provide the opportunity for local and foreign investors to access indiscriminately, for the benefit of tax, financial and administrative incentives.

There are two types of incentives available to investors, notably:


  • Tax and customs incentives: several incentives of this nature are granted to investors for a period of fifteen (15) years, including five (5) for the installation phase and ten (10) years for the operating phase.

During the installation phase (5 years) the investor benefits from the following exemptions:

  • Registration rights for operations related to the implementation of the project
  • VAT on importing equipment
  • taxes and customs duties on all equipment and equipment related to the investment program

During the operating phase (10 years) the investor can also benefit from exemptions or discounts:

  • on net income taxes
  • tariffs, as well as all fees and services taxes applicable to the importation of equipment
  • all taxes on the transfer, purchase or sale of foreign currency and any indirect consumption taxes
  • Administrative and financial
  • Administrative incentives

Setting up a specific visa that the foreign investor can easily obtain on a simple request from the IPA

The Operationalization of Investor reception desks at Cameroon’s International Airports

The Operationalization of the investors one-stop-shop at the two (02) investment promotion bodies (IPA and APME).

  • Financial incentives

The right to open and operate in the Republic of Cameroon and abroad in local currency and currency accounts

The right to freely cash and hold funds acquired or borrowed abroad and to dispose of them freely

The right to freely transfer dividends and proceeds from share sale and to pay non-resident suppliers


Applies at two levels:

  • Companies promoting priority sectors

Specific incentives are given to companies that invest to achieve the following priority objectives:

  • The development of agriculture, fishing, livestock, packaging and storage of plant, animal or fish products;
  • The development of tourism and leisure, social economy and handicrafts;
  • The development of social housing;
  • The promotion of agribusiness, manufacturing, heavy industry, building materials, steel, metal construction, maritime and navigation activities;
  • The development of energy and water supply;
  • Encouraging regional development and decentralisation;
  • Combating pollution and protecting the environment, promoting and transferring innovative technologies and research and development;
  • Export promotion;
  • Job promotion and vocational training.

Specific incentives here include:

  • VAT exemption on investment programme loans
  • Exemption from property tax on built and unbuilt buildings, part of the dedicated site of the processing unit and all real estate extensions by destination
  • Direct removal at investor’s request and Removal from fixed law
  • Special temporary admission
  • Exemption from exit duties for exporting companies
  • the development of existing companies

These are companies engaged in an investment programme aimed at expanding production, renewing its assets, or increasing its performance. Earnings duration can reach 05 years:

  • Reducing tariffs
  • Corporate tax cuts

However, it should be noted that this Act does not apply to investments in sectors that are governed by specific codes, such as oil, gas, mining, and PPPs.

In the hydrocarbon sector

The law of 25 April 2019 governing the new oil code in force in Cameroon, grants incentives of all kinds. These incentives help mitigate the risks investors take in the oil sector and improve the economy of their projects.

Taxwise, this oil code offers tax consolidation measures, periods of tax exemptions, a tax rate reduced to 35%, incentives to acquire seismic data, exemption from the payment of signing bonuses, etc. The text also specifies that specific investment programmes aimed at increasing production, such as tertiary recovery, can benefit from incentives.


Incentives in Law No. 2016/017 of 14 December 2016 under Mining Code have been improved to promote the sector in Cameroon. Important tax and customs benefits are offered to research or mining companies, including exemption from the patent, free registration of company deeds, VAT exemption on local purchases and imports of mining equipment and equipment on the mining list, admission to the temporary customs regime for mining equipment and machinery, etc. This code also offers foreign exchange guarantees for foreign investors and workers in this sector. Besides, it provides two mechanisms that could encourage Cameroonians to become more involved and to develop industrialization in this area, including the obligation of the Cameroonian legal society to hold at least 51% of national shares and the state’s expressed guarantee of the availability of raw materials for local processing companies of mineral substances from artisanal and/or semi-mechanical exploitation.