The textile sector in Cameroon is largely dominated by China which controls around 82 per cent of the market, reports the Cotton Industry Cameroon (CICAM). And this unusual situation is detrimental to the local sector. These figures are opposite of the position three decades ago when the CICAM controlled 85 per cent of the market. Despite the huge influx of textiles from China and West African countries along with counterfeiting, smuggling and fraud for more than 50 years, unique local producers, cannot meet market requirements. Adding to their woes, is the low quality and quantity of locally produced raw material.
Cameroon, which has an annual production capacity of 3,50,000 tons of cotton, will be able to double production, given the availability of labour and arable land. Another problem is the cheaper prices of Chinese products which lures consumers to purchase them. Since last year, the government has embarked on an investment program of 5 billion CFA francs, their aim is to boost production tools to make it more competitive.