Convened recently by the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Center (SBEC), of Nkafu Policy Institute, at Denis & Lenora Foretia Foundation, Yaoundé, multi-stakeholders in the small and medium-size business landscape in Cameroon, met at Maison Provincial, Centre D’acceuil, Mvolye, Yaoundé, to brainstorm on issues of common concern.
Family photograph between participants, staff and panelists.
It was not only within the context of a one-year project funded by Atlas Network, but equally in furtherance of its prime objective of spurring economic growth in Cameroon through the provision of the tools needed to establish, expand, and sustain businesses in the private sector, that the event was convened.
Cross-section of participants at the SBEC Forum.
During the two panel sessions that characterized the day, a heterogenous background of business experts from the private sector, public service, and academic setting took turns to treat the over 70 participants to diverse subjects of interest around doing business in Cameroon.
1st & 2nd pictures (from L-R) show 1st & 2nd panels respectively. From L-R, in Panel 1, we have Mr. Maurice Nso, Mr. George Neba & Mr. Schouame Cyrille. In panel 2, we have Dr. Wochu Cornelius, Mr. D’pola Ulrich, and Mr. Maurice Nso.
Topics like, but not limited to the following were elaborated: the small business landscape in Cameroon; the role of SBEC, fund raising, and budgeting practices for Small and Medium-Size Enterprises (SMEs); overcoming SMEs’ regulatory challenges; complying with administrative requirements and bureaucratic costs; overcoming extra payments and tracasseries; key reforms to boost SMEs in Cameroon; reforms to overcoming corruption practices in SMEs; and preparing SMEs to access credit.’
Opening remarks by Mr. Frank Awung, Board Member, Denis & Lenora Foretia Foundation.
According to Anaϊs, one of the participants, ‘…it was educative. I used to think that as a business person in Cameroon, one must bribe to succeed in business. But during the sessions, I learnt that there are units available to lend us a helping hand, to facilitate our work while ensuring we do the right thing.’
Valery on his part, another participant revealed that ‘…it was a wonderful event. It was inspiring [and] I learnt a lot [on] how to start a small business.’
Glaringly, the interactions between participants & panelists/presenters is worth noting.
At the close, gifts were presented to guest panelists and other personalities whose pathfinding and selfless sacrifice in enhancing SBEC and hence the Foundation’s mission, was remarkable. Also present was Mr. Frank Awung (Board member of the Foundation) who gave the opening remarks.
Presentation of appreciation packs.