The Legal Framework of Public-Private Partnerships in Cameroon: A Comprehensive Guide

February 26, 2024

In recent years, public-private partnerships (PPPs) have emerged as a key approach for promoting economic development and infrastructure growth in Cameroon.
With the government's emphasis on encouraging investment and improving service delivery, knowing the legal framework governing Public-Private Partnerships is critical for both domestic and international companies.

In order to strengthen public-private partnerships in Cameroon, the recently conducted Cameroon-European Union Business Week, which took place from February 20th to22nd, 2024 in Cameroon, aimed at establishing a great partnership between both parties.

The ceremony marked the introduction of the Team Europe Initiative- Investing in Young Businesses in Africa, with Cameroon included.

This blog article aims to provide a comprehensive guide to the legal framework of Public- Private Partnership in Cameroon, highlighting key regulations and mechanisms that enable successful partnerships.

1. Overview of Public-Private Partnerships in Cameroon

Public-Private Partnerships in Cameroon are commonly established to develop infrastructure projects, improve service quality, and promote economic growth.
These partnerships involve collaboration between the government and private sector entities, leveraging their respectivestrengths, expertise, and resources.

2. Legal Framework and Governing Laws

The legal structure for Public- Private Partnerships in Cameroon is primarily governed by two key regulations:

a. Law n°2006/012 of the 29thDecember 2006 stating general regulations of partnership contracts.
This law focuses one stablishing common principles and procedures for Public- Private Partnership projects, including selection and management processes, risk allocation, dispute resolution, and financial arrangements.

b. The 2014 Decree
This decree provides detailed guidelines on the implementation of the 2013 Public- Private Partnership Law, specifying procurement procedures, project management, and contract administration.
C. The Cameroon Investment Charter
The investment charter outlines all sectors of the Cameroon economic possible for investment and for Public-Private Partnerships. It defines the scope of foreign investors doing business in Cameroon.
d. The OHADA Business Laws
The OHADA business laws define the structure and registration of companies involve in Public-Private Partnerships in Cameroon.

3. Public- Private Partnership Structures and Forms

Public- Private Partnership in Cameroon can take various forms, depending on the project goals and objectives. These include:

a. Concession Agreements
Under a concession agreement, a private party is granted the right to design, finance, build, operate, and maintain an infrastructure project for a specified period. The private partner generates revenue through user fees defined in the agreement.

b. Joint Ventures
Public and private entities form a partnership to jointly own, invest, and operate a project. This structure encourages knowledge transfer, risk sharing, and technology transfer.

c. Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT)
Build Operates Transfer arrangements involve private entities financing, constructing, and operating an infrastructure project for a certain period before transferring it back to the government.

4. Public- Private Partnership Project Lifecycle

i. Identification and Preparation: The government identifies potential projects and assesses their feasibility, conducting appropriate studies, and defining objectives.

ii. Procurement: A transparent and competitive procurement process is followed, emphasizing fair competition, value for money, and the selection of qualified private partners.

iii. Negotiation and Contracting: Negotiation between the government and the private partner results in a legally binding contract, emphasizing risk allocation, performance indicators, and dispute resolution mechanisms.

iv. Implementation and Operation: The private partner develops, constructs, and operates the project as per the agreed terms. The government oversees compliance, monitors performance, and ensures contract enforcement.

v. Monitoring and Evaluation: Regular evaluations and monitoring of the project's performance are conducted to ensure adherence to contractual obligations and project success.

5. Dispute Resolution Mechanisms

To address potential disputes arising from Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs), Cameroon offers various dispute resolution mechanisms in accordance with the OHADA Uniform Act on Arbitration with it permanent court headquartered in Abidjan, Cote D’voir , including mediation, arbitration, and litigation. Parties involved in a PPP project can choose the most suitable method for resolving disputes, thereby ensuring a fair and efficient process.

6. Conclusion

Cameroon's legal framework for public-private partnerships lays a solid framework for promoting economic growth and infrastructural development.
Businesses and investors can navigate the Public-Private Partnership Law of 2006 stating the general regulations of partnership contracts in Cameroon and its following decree with greater confidence.

With a variety of Public-Private Partnership frameworks available, partnerships can be tailored to specific project objectives, resulting in mutually beneficial interactions between the public and private sectors.
Cameroon intends to attract and sustain successful Public-Private Partnership initiatives that contribute to its socio economic progress by adhering to the approved project cycle and applying proper dispute resolution mechanisms.

7. The Role of Neneng LawOffice in Public-Private Partnerships in Cameroon.

Looking for a renowned law firmin Cameroon with qualified attorneys? The Neneng Law Office is the place to go.
We are committed to providing high-quality legal services to our clients based on our years of experience and expertise.
Whether you need assistance with legal advisory, due diligence, contracting, legal representation or anyother legal issue, our team of qualified lawyers in Cameroon are ready to assist you.
Client satisfaction is Neneng Law Office's primary priority, with personalized attention and appropriate solutions for each case.
You may count on our professionalism and extensive knowledge of the public- private partnership sector and legal framework in Cameroon. For any of your legal needs, contact Neneng Law Office now.



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