ASSESSING THE CONTRIBUTION OF AGRO PROCESSING SECTOR ON THE ECONOMIC GROWTH OF CAMEROON: THE CASE OF COFFEE, COCOA AND PALM EVIDENCE FROM 1980-2013
NKWELLE JEROME ALOBWEDE
Department of Development Studies
Masters in Science Degree in Sustainable Development with Specialization in Agriculture and Development
Worldwide, the utilization of agro processing sector offers potentials for economic and social benefits including employment creation, income generation and reduction in postharvest losses and overall economic growth. Their impacts vary from country to country and from one product to another. This dissertation is aimed at assessing the contribution of agro processing sector on the economic growth of Cameroon, the case of coffee cocoa and palm nuts”. Specifically, it examined the trend of coffee, cocoa and palm nut processing sector in relation to economic trend of Cameroon, To assess the individual impact of the cocoa, palm and coffee agro processing sectors on the economic growth of Cameroon and To assess the combined impact of the coffee, cocoa and palm agro processing sector on the economic growth of Cameroon. The research made used of time series data obtained from the World Bank Development Indicators and FAO data base from 1980-2013 and made used of the ordinary least square technique to estimate. The result revealed that coffee processing sector had decreasing trend since the 1980, while the palm nut industry has an upward sloping curve. Further empirical result shows there is an overall positive and significant effect (1% confident interval) (pro>F=0.000) of the agro processing sector on economic growth of Cameroon with Adj R value of 0.5970. Considering individual industries, coffee processing had a negative and significant (10%) effect on GDP with the other two having positive effect on GDP. It is concluded, agro processing which is still at its growth stage in Cameroon though it has significantly contributing to economic growth, for the sector to acquire maximum gain, the government should set up farm settlement schemes with necessary infrastructure, favorable business environment that encourages investment in the agro processing sector especially the coffee industry that needs to be revamped.
Key word: Agro processing, Economic growth, GDP