Obtaining Construction Permit In Cameroon: Is The Interference Of Professionals’ Associations Necessary?
Date: June 18th 2021 at the Mansel Hotel, Fouda, Yaoundé-Cameroon (Register Here)
A resilient and adaptable infrastructure is necessary for economic development. In other to realize such projects, individuals are required to obtain a building permit. The building permit is a preliminary declaration that allows for the verification of a construction initiative in a given locality, in line with town planning and architectural rules in force. In Cameroon, this document issued by the local council authority is mandatory for any possible new construction or modification of an existing infrastructure. Therefore, any construction without an official permit is liable to a penalty of 30% of the estimated cost of the building.
According to Law No.2004/003 of April 21, 2004, governing the Cameroonian Urban Planning Code and the decree of 23rd April 2008; the process of obtaining this document has been considerably shortened. Yet, it remains quite complex. This complexity is evident in the plurality of procedures, requirements, norms, offices, conditions, actors, documents, and stakeholders involved in the process. All these are accompanied by the heavy financial burden, time-consuming processes, boycotts, administrative bottlenecks and corruption; all of which lead to unorganized and slow urban development. Moreover, within this complexity is the reality that such mechanisms differ from one place to another across the national territory; thereby creating some sought of uncertainty, non-uniformity, and lack of trust in the system. The improvement in the issuance mechanism of Construction Permits in Cameroon is very vital for a country that has the ambition to achieve its economic emergence by 2035.
To issue the document, the administrative and technical bodies ensure that future infrastructure comply with town planning regulations, whether it concerns the layout of the works, their nature, their location, the architecture or the development of their surroundings. They equally check if the work plan has been established under the responsibility of an architect registered with the National Order of Architects of Cameroon. Law n° 2004/003 of 21 April 2004 governing urban planning in Cameroon, stipulates in its article 107 paragraph 1 that the building permit is obtained “…after verification of its conformity with the rules of art and urban planning rules in force”.
Despite the reforms undertaken in the urbanization sector in Cameroon (2014, 2016, 2017), many bottlenecks still mar the process of obtaining building permits. In particular, there are governance issues. Excessive procedural patterns seem to hamper the realization of the objectives set by the government of Cameroon to attract much needed local and foreign direct investment to the country. Other related challenges are the real costs of obtaining permits, delays, land issues, corruption and influence peddling.
Cognizant of all these difficulties, and knowing that the construction permit is one of the indicators that informs the business environment of a state, the Nkafu Policy Institute of the Denis & Lenora Foretia Foundation, is organizing a public debate on the theme: Obtaining construction permit in Cameroon: Is the interference of professionals associations necessary?”.
The main objective of the Nkafu public debates is to provide a platform for high-level Cameroonian and African experts to address the requirements for successful investment in Cameroon. This particular event aims to provide a critical assessment of the current business environment on the processing of construction permits in Cameroon.
Specifically, it will provide an opportunity to:
- Examine Cameroon’s past performance in the Doing Business Index, particularly in terms of facilitating construction permits;
- Critically assess the legislation and administrative procedures for obtaining construction permits;
- Assess the appropriateness of transferring the processing and issuing of building permits to professional associations such as civil engineers and architects etc.;
- Identify and propose policy recommendations to facilitate the process of obtaining construction permits and improve the business climate in Cameroon.
- Abondo Antoine Rollin, Civil Engineer
- Dr. Steve Tametong, Democracy Fellow, Nkafu Policy health Institute
- Abanda Jean Rogwer, Civil Engineer, Polytechnician E-MBA Strategic Management
- Etie Lionel Makoge, Magistrate Supreme Court
Moderator: Dr. Fuein Vera, Research Fellow in Economics Affairs, Nkafu Policy Institute
Venue and date
This second edition of the Nkafu Public Debates is scheduled for June 18th 2021 at the Mansel Hotel, Fouda, Yaoundé-Cameroon.
This debate will provide a forum of 50 participants from different fields of expertise, and will enable them to build new relationships and strengthen existing ones. The audience consists of government representatives, professionals’ associations (civil engineers, architects, notaries, etc.), academics, researchers and students, speakers, entrepreneurs, non-governmental organizations, civil society and public representatives etc.
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