Six countries in central and western Africa have agreed to allow people to travel visa-free from one country to another.
This scheme was ratified by these countries, referred to as the CEMAC (Central African Economic and Monetary Community), at summit in N’Djamena, the capital of Chad, on 31 October
The six member states of CEMAC bloc – Cameroon, Chad, Central African Republic, the Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea and Gabon – are all former French colonies.
In its statement, the summit authorised the BDEAC (Development Bank of the Central African States), a regional bank, to allocate $3.01 million to support the agreement’s application.
According to Agence France Presse, discussions on this deal began more than 15 years ago, leading to a draft agreement in 2013 that was awaiting ratification by all its member states.
Alain-Claude Bilie By Nze, the Gabonese government’s spokesman, said though there were authentic concerns about this pact, it was the obligation of the states in this region to surmount them.
He said that for implementing the scheme, three crucial elements were required: coordination between security services and police among countries in the bloc, introducing biometric (ID) technology and adhering to labour regulations.”
Along with visa-free access for workers, a major bureaucratic hurdle will be spared to transport companies and other cross-border services providers of the region.
There are plans on the anvil to create a regional airline and a single passport for this bloc.
If you are looking to travel to any one of the CEMAC countries, get in touch with Y-Axis, a preeminent company for immigration services, to apply for a visa.