Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Presidency of CEMAC: the challenges awaiting Paul Biya

It is logically in the principle of the rotating presidency that Paul Biya was elected president in office of the conference of heads of state of this subregional institution. Here are the major issues that await it.

On the menu of construction sites waiting for the new president, we note the good place of the file of the Community Integration Tax (TCI). According to Idriss Deby, the execution of the tax remains "mixed". "The security of the TCI would undoubtedly have favored highly appreciable results. But this, although agreed between all Member States, is formalized so far only by Gabon and Chad and in addition, in these two countries, a still unsatisfactory operation, "said Idriss Deby. In 2019, Cemac expects CFAF 57 billion from TCI, despite its potential estimated at CFAF 99.7 billion. Mr Deby proposed to withdraw ICT from the national treasures circuit to offer the Community "the means to its policy and its ambition".

Headquarters of Cemac

Paul Biya will also find on his table, the file relating to the relocation of the Commission of Cemac in the Central African Republic (CAR), his country of statutory seat. Started in April 2017, the relocation process of the Commission in Bangui has come up against the persistence of the security crisis, the shortage of housing for expatriate civil servants and the ongoing cash flow of the Cemac Commission. In view of this situation, the acting President of the Conference of Heads of State Idriss Deby, by decision of 19 February 2018, suspended the process of return to Bangui by instructing the Commission to move temporarily to Malabo in the Republic of Equatorial Guinea. However, in parallel with its temporary installation in Malabo, the commission undertook studies for the rehabilitation of Cemac's assets in Bangui, thus preparing the conditions for its return.

Community Mining Code

The process of developing the Community Mining Code has made considerable progress, according to Idriss Deby. The process required consultations within all member states as well as a careful analysis of all national legislation affecting the mining sector. The first version of the Code developed, available since October 2017, was the subject of fruitful discussions among state experts in September 2018. But it is under Paul Biya that these discussions are expected to continue to take into account suggestions. and reservations of certain Member States. The document resulting from these exchanges will be discussed, at a later stage, with the actors of mining companies and the civil society before being submitted for approval, at the meeting of the sectoral ministers, then for adoption at the Council of Ministers of the Union of Central African States (Ueac).

Negotiations with the European Union for a regional configuration EPA Negotiations with the European Union for a Regional

Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) are to be held in conjunction with the African Union (AU). Because, it should be recalled in this regard that strong differences on the financing of this EPA, had led to a break of negotiations by the European side, October 27, 2016.

The relaunching of the negotiations today sought should be done on the basis of conclusions of the Technical Group in charge of Customs Affairs (GTAD), as well as the evaluation of projects to strengthen the productive capacities of Central African States. Only the results of this work will make it possible, from the market access offer contained in the already existing interim agreement between Cameroon and the European Union, to make adjustments in order to constitute a regional offer to propose to the European party.

This offer will be submitted beforehand for validation to the meeting of Central African Ministers in charge of negotiations of the EPA (Comina). Other files that await Paul Biya concern the Cemac rail loop (TDRs waiting to launch the contracting process), the integrated digital infrastructure of Cemac, the study for the implementation of a Central African satellite, etc.

Source: 237actu.com