Cameroon

Cameroon, on the Gulf of Guinea, is a Central African country of varied terrain and wildlife. Its inland capital, Yaoundé, and its biggest city, the seaport Douala, are transit points to ecotourism sites as well as beach resorts like Kribi – near the Chutes de la Lobé waterfalls, which plunge directly into the sea – and Limbe, where the Limbe Wildlife Centre houses rescued primates.

From the low and marshy coastal area, the land of Cameroon rises into a rain forest plateau. From there the land moves higher into the central Adamawa Plateau, where some elevations reach over 4,000 ft. To the north of Benoue National Park, the land slopes into a savanna plain that extends to the shores of Lake Chad. In far southwest Cameroon is mountainous. Mt Cameroon (an active volcano), sits on the edge of the Gulf of Guinea, and is the highest point in West Africa, as well as in Cameroon, at 13,353 ft. (4,070 m). Significant rivers include the Dja, Nyong, and Sanaga. Cameroon’s lowest point is the Atlantic Ocean (0 m).

Key Cities

Key cities in Cameroon include: Douala, Yaounde, Bamenda, Bafoussam, Garoua, Maroua, Kumba, Ngaoundere, Nkongsaba, Buea.

Historical, Cultural facts & Religion

Beginning in 1884, all of present-day Cameroon and parts of several of its neighbors became the German colony of Kamerun, with a capital first at Buea and later at Yaounde. After World War I, this colony was partitioned between Britain and France under a June 28, 1919, League of Nations mandate.

Cameroon culture consists of numerous religions including Christianity (about 69%), Islam (about 21%), and many other indigenous religions. The citizens of Cameroon are entitled to freedom of religion, as it is stated within their constitution.

Christianity, Islam and Traditionalists are the three main religions in Cameroon. Christian churches and Muslim centers of various denominations operate freely throughout Cameroon while the traditionalists operate in their shrines and temples which are also becoming popular today.

Brief Country History

Cameroon officially known as the Republic of Cameroon is a nation in West Africa. It is bordered by the Central African Republic to the east, Chad to the northeast, Nigeria to the west, and the Republic of the Congo, Gabon, and Equatorial Guinea to the south. The country’s coastline lies in the Bight of Biafra, a section of the Gulf of Guinea, and the Atlantic Ocean.

Early settlers of Cameroon included the Baka hunter-gatherers in the southeastern rainforest and the Sao civilization, found in Lake Chad. In the 15th century, Portuguese explorers arrived at the coast and named the region Rio dos Camarões which translates to the Shrimp River. This later became Cameroon in English. In the 19th century, the Fulani soldiers established the Adamawa Emirate in the northern region of the country. A number of ethnic groups of northwest and west of the country also created powerful chiefdoms. It was in 1884 when Cameroon became a German colony referred to as Kamerun.

When World War I came to an end, the region was divided between the United Kingdom and France as per the mandates of the League of Nations. In 1960, the region of Cameroon governed by the French acquired independence as the Republic of Cameroun and Ahmadou Ahidjo was the president. In 1961, the southern part of British Cameroons integrated with the Republic of Cameroun to form the Federal Republic of Cameroon which was abandoned in 1972. The same year, the country was renamed the United Republic of Cameroon and later on the Republic of Cameroon in 1984.

Currently, Cameroon enjoys high social and political stability. This has enabled the development of railways, roads, agriculture, and timber and large petroleum industries. Nonetheless, the majority of citizens live in poverty and rely on subsistence farming. Power is solely in the hands of Paul Biya who has been president since 1982, and his political party, Cameroon People’s Democratic Movement Party

 Language (s) Written & Spoken

Cameroon is home to nearly 250 languages. These include 55 Afro-Asiatic languages, two. French and English are official languages, a heritage of Cameroon’s colonial past as a colony of most people in the English-speaking Northwest and Southwest provinces speak Cameroonian Pidgin English as a lingua franca.

The official languages of Cameroon are French and English, which both belong to the Indo-European language family. French is part of the Romance subgroup, whereas English is part of the Germanic subgroup. Both languages use the same Latin alphabet, although written French utilizes accent marks over certain vowels.

 Important Types of Commerce in Cameroon

Cameroon is an independent nation located in Central Africa, bordering Chad, Nigeria, Central African Republic, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, and the Congo. In 2008, the country’s GDP per capita based on purchasing power parity was approximately $2,300, and it is among the top 10 highest in sub-Saharan Africa. Cameroon is aiming to be an emerging economy by 2035.

In the initial aftermath of independence, the country had strong economic growth with the GDP growing at an average of 4% annually. Between 2004 and 2008 the country managed to reduce public debt from 60% of the GDP to less than 10% and its official reserves have doubled tenfold to more than $3 billion. In 2014 the unemployment rate in the country at about 4.4% and almost a third of the country’s population was living below the poverty line of under $1.25 a day.

Cameroon started following programs as advised by the IMF and World Bank starting from the 1980s which promoted privatization of industries reducing poverty, and increasing economic growth. The country has taken steps to encourage the growth of tourism in the country. The major industries in Cameroon include agriculture, mining, manufacturing, trade, and transport among others.

  • Agriculture
  • Manufacturing
  • Finance and Trade

 Language Services US and others will provide working with Cameroon

Translation and interpreting have a significant role to play in all aspects of language policy in Cameroon. In the Cameroonian context, translation is considered not merely as a transcoding or transfer process from one language/culture to another but also as an activity that pursues bilingualism and multilingualism as an ultimate objective. For a business to reach the widest audience in Cameroon it is required to have expertise with the French language. Language service providers can help a business to overcome this obstacle. Translation can be considered to be that indispensable cohesive element that mediates between the over 280 different Cameroonian ethnolinguistic and cultural groups.

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