Trucking capacity in Cameroon, estimated to be more than 35,000 units, exceeds the normal domestic transport demand, though the majority of trucks are old (more than 30 years of age). During cotton or fertilizers campaigns when the demand is very high, it remains possible to find trucks for any given transport. Isolated areas might be an exception during the wet season. The transporters might refuse to go to these areas, and prices could be notably increased.
Transit cargo from Cameroon to neighbouring countries, such as Chad and CAR, is regulated by conventions implementing a regime of quotas respectively applied and managed by officially recognized structures in each country, such as:
- Cameroon: Bureau de Gestion de Fret Terrestre Camerounais (BGFT);
- Chad : Bureau National de Fret Tchadien (BNFT);
- CAR : Bureau d’Affrètement Routier Centrafricain (BARC) ;
From Cameroon to each of the above countries the bound cargo commodities should be transported as follows:
- Chad: 35% by Cameroonian trucks and 65% by Chadian trucks;
- CAR: 40% by Cameroonian trucks and 60% by CAR trucks
- Equatorial Guinea and Gabon: no cargo transport convention exists.
The Cameroon transport companies could be split in three categories:
- The “end-to-end” companies such as Bollore Transport & Logistique (BTL), Maersk-Damco, la CMA-CGM (Compagnie Meridionale d’Affretement – Compagnie Générale Maritime) and OBT Shipping.
- Professional trucks companies, who entirely or partially own their fleet via leasing or premium purchase, like 3T or MEDLOG.
- Brokers, individuals or group of individuals hiring their vehicles on daily basis also called “Bana-bana”.
According to the Bureau de Gestion du Fret Terrestre (BGFT), these companies own many trucks estimated in 2014 at around 35,000 units. The truck companies are specialized in transport between main cities to neighbouring countries (Chad, the Central African Republic, Congo, Gabon and Equatorial Guinea).
The regime of quota could be difficult to observe in circumstances where one of the two countries (Chad and Central African Republic) has less trucks than Cameroon compared to its quota. In case it happens that a neighbour country cannot fulfil the transport of its quota, a gentleman’s agreement allows Cameroon to complete the transport facilities of the concerned cargo.
For more information on transport company contact details, please see the following link: 4.8 Cameroon Transporter Contact List
Transport in North-West and South-West
An additional constraint comes from the conflict in NW and SW. Security is a concern and most of the major transport companies refuse to send their fleet in these two regions. Several smaller companies do continue to do so. For more information on transport company contact details, please see the following link: 4.8 Cameroon Transporter Contact List
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