Maritime transport, which is an economic activity in which developing countries had not been involved for a long time, generally fetches a lot of foreign earnings for the economies of most countries. According to a generally accepted estimate, sea transport of goods accounts for three quarters of international trade. This brings out the importance of maritime transport and enables us to understand the reaction of developing countries which seek to assert their own share of the market by actively and equitably taking part in seaborne transport.
During the 1972 3rd United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the group of "77" recommended that developing countries should create, on the one hand, shipping lines in order to be able to take part in the maritime transportation of their home commodities and, on the other hand, shippers’ councils were tasked with negotiating and controlling the application of freight rates.
Within the purview of the implementation of the UNCTAD recommendations, the Ministerial Conference of West and Central African States on Maritime Transport (MINCONMAR) saw the light of day. MINCONMAR’s charter lays down guidelines for sub-regional maritime policy. These include:
These recommendations prompted the government of Cameroon to resolutely embark on the promotion and control of maritime transport. Consequently, the following were created:
The CNSC was entrusted with the following missions:
Gradually, the economic environment changed and maritime transport underwent profound technological and structural changes. Economic globalisation and the liberalisation of services became requirements for putting in place new economic and social development strategies.
At the same time, the participation of shippers’ councils of the sub-region in various international meetings on maritime transport enabled them to see the need for reforms aimed at further adapting their missions, diversifying their activities and strengthening their capacity in order to better protect the interest of shippers.
It was within this context that the CNSC was reorganised by Decree No. 98/311 of 9 December 1998.
Enable each shipper to perform import and export operations with ease regardless of the mode of transport chosen and at an optimal cost.
Contribute to increasing the competitiveness of shippers and best protecting their interests throughout the multimodal transport chain so as to enable them to effectively meet international trade challenges and demands.