The Cameroonian government launched its e-visa system on April 30. Applications can now be submitted via the evisacam platform and results are provided within 72 hours for the regular procedure and 24 hours for express applications.
The Foreign Minister, Lejeune Mbella Mbella, who presided over the launching ceremony in Yaoundé said this new step is aimed at making the country more attractive to visitors. The official also announced an increase in visa fees, as provided for in the 2023 finance law. Before this law was adopted, visa fees were CFA50,000 for 3 months, CFA100,000 for 6 months, and CFA150,000 for 12 months. The new schedule sets two categories of visas: one for 6 months and the second for 12 months, and both are available via normal (72 hours) and express (24 hours) procedures. However, while the price for the regular procedure has not changed, the government revised that of the fast-track procedure upward. Fees for the short-stay visa have been raised to CFA150,000 and those for the long-stay visa to CFA200,000.
Lejeune Mbella Mbella said this price adjustment is an incentive “for the business community and the diaspora”. Another source close to the matter said it will help write off the services of Impact Palmarès R&D SAS, led by the Beninese Giresse Justin Tella. This company is engaged in a 10-year contract with the State of Cameroon, and will receive, according to the clauses of the agreement, 30% of the fees of each visa issued by the country, we learned.
Flexibility and security
The partnership based on the Build Operate Transfer (BOT) model was signed in April 2022. It provides, in terms of infrastructure, the construction of a data center in Yaoundé for the storage and security of data. Biometric equipment is also being installed in Cameroon’s diplomatic missions and consular posts to print biometric visas on secure labels. According to the Foreign Minister, the system proposed by Impact Palmarès is the one tested at the Embassy of Cameroon in Côte d’Ivoire for several months. “It is kind of a better version of the DIPLOMAT system developed by the new technologies and cryptography unit of Minrex, both in terms of security and data centralization,” the minister said.
“The new system enables users to travel to Cameroon within 24 hours of submitting their application. Additionally, it provides greater flexibility to diplomatic missions and consular posts, which are now able to process requests from their countries of attachment, beyond their accredited competencies,” said Lejeune Mbela Mbela.
E-visa systems have already been implemented by approximately 20 African nations, such as Benin, Côte d’Ivoire, Sierra Leone, and South Africa.
Source: Business in Cameroon