New Bauxite Mining Venture in Cameroon Promises Thousands of Jobs

Governments in Africa are taking steps to lure more investors to their mining sectors with friendly legislation and attractive tax breaks. One...

CAMEROON: Food price hikes mean hungrier, angrier prisoners

DOUALA Thursday, November 27, 2008 (IRIN) - Food price hikes that sparked deadly riots in Cameroon earlier this year have severely cut meals for...

CAMEROON: Whose responsibility is HIV transmission?

YAOUNDÉ Wednesday, November 26, 2008 (IRIN) - When newspapers in Cameroon carried the story of a local businessman who allegedly had infected young...

CAMEROON: Rapid intervention military unit strays from its mission

DOUALA Friday, August 29, 2008 (IRIN) - In 2001 the Cameroonian government created a special rapid intervention battalion (BIR) to quell...

CAMEROON-NIGERIA: Bakassi returnees overwhelm authorities

ABUJA Thursday, September 11, 2008 (IRIN) - Up to 100,000 Nigerians displaced from Bakassi in southern Nigeria are sheltering in makeshift camps 10...

CAMEROON: Desperately seeking third-line medication

YAOUNDÉ Wednesday, November 05, 2008 (IRIN) - Marie Gisèle Tientcheu, 30, an AIDS activist, has developed resistance to second-line antiretroviral...


Capital: Yaoundé
Major Towns: Douala
Location (geographical coordinates/latitude and longitude): 3°52'N, 11°31'E
Time Zone: WAT (UTC+1)
Size (Land and Sea) total: 475,440 sq km
Borders with Central African Republic 797 km, Chad 1,094 km, Republic of the Congo 523 km, Equatorial Guinea 189 km, Gabon 298 km, Nigeria 1,690 km
Elevation extremes (lowest and highest points): Lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m; highest point: Fako 4,095 m (on Mt. Cameroon)

Head of State: Paul Biya
Form of Government: Republic with multiparty presidential regime
Independancy from France: 1 January 1960; from UK: 1 October 1961
Currency: CFA franc (XAF)


Main industries (income): Petroleum production and refining, aluminum production, food processing, light consumer goods, textiles, lumber, ship repair

Population and People 

Population: 18,060,382
Growth rate (birth rate): 35.07 births/1,000 population (2007 est.)
Religion: Indigenous beliefs 40%, Christian 40%, Muslim 20%
Languages: 24 major African language groups, English (official), French (official)
Ethnic groups / Tribes: Cameroon Highlanders 31%, Equatorial Bantu 19%, Kirdi 11%, Fulani 10%, Northwestern Bantu 8%, Eastern Nigritic 7%, other African 13%, non-African less than 1%
Average age: 0-14 years: 41.3% (male 3,763,332/female 3,695,053); 15-64 years: 55.5% (male 5,029,658/female 4,994,786); 65 years and over: 3.2% (male 266,616/female 310,937) (2007 est.)"
Literacy (definition: age 15 and over can read and write): Total population: 67.9%; male: 77%
female: 59.8% (2001 est.)

  • estimates between 230 and 288 ethnic groups and languages
  • country is called "Africa in miniature" for its geological and cultural diversity
  • beaches, deserts, mountains, rainforests, and savannas
  • Mount Cameroon
  • football crazy country, internationally successful team
  • northern French part and English south
  • large petroleum and timber industries
  • forested volcanic mountains
  • Mount Cameroon, an active volcano: 4,095m
  • variety of types of foods, like cassava, okra, fufu, curries, yams, plantains,  peanuts, millet, spicy sauces, fresh fruit
  • remains of the the Sao civilisation
  • Pygmy groups
  • Equatorial rainforest
  • the coastal belt includes some of the wettest places on earth
  • 400km of coastline
  • Natural resources: petroleum, bauxite, iron ore, timber, hydropower
  • diverse cultures
  • palm wine and millet beer
  • pottery and ceramics, basket weaving, beadworking, brass and bronze working, calabash carving and painting, embroidery, and leather working
  • Traditional sports include canoe racing and wrestling, and several hundred runners participate in the 40 km (24.8 mi) Mount Cameroon Race of Hope each year
  • Cameroon is one of the few tropical countries to have competed in the Winter Olympics
  • football being the most popular sports: Cameroon has won four African Cup of Nations titles and the gold medal at the 2000 Olympics
  • wildlife, including gorillas, elephant, buffalo, giant forest hog, red river hog, yellow-backed duiker and bongo antelope
  • coffee and cocoa exporteur
  • Lowland gorillas in Lobeke National Park
  • Cameroon National Festival, the country's biggest non-religious festival and a lively spectacle of parades and happy celebration
  • Korup National Park, home to Africa’s oldest and most biologically diverse rainforest. See a wide variety of primates, birds, trees and other plants, including dozens of recently discovered species while fording waist-high pools in 100% humidity
  • bustling Yaoundé
  • beautiful white beaches