More information about Cameroon is available on the Cameroon page and from other Department of State publications and other sources listed at the end of this fact sheet.
U.S. Relations with Cameroon
The United States established diplomatic relations with Cameroon in 1960, following the independence of the French-administered part of the country. Cooperation between the United States and Cameroon spans a broad range of areas to include health, regional security, human rights, humanitarian assistance, and environmental protection. Cameroon plays a key role in regional stability and remains a regional partner in countering terrorism in the Lake Chad Region and anti-piracy efforts in the Gulf of Guinea. The United States is closely engaged with the Cameroonian government and civil society on issues that address democracy and governance, particularly in regard to human rights and humanitarian concerns in the Northwest, Southwest, and Far North regions.
U.S. Assistance and other Programs to Cameroon
Since 2001, the United States has provided nearly $1.7 billion in foreign assistance to Cameroon (source: ForeignAssistance.gov). The U.S. government provides health assistance to Cameroon through the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, the Global Health Security Agenda, the President’s Malaria Initiative and other global health programs, and works across five U.S. government agencies to support Cameroon’s national HIV and TB programs. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has provided assistance to Cameroon since 1989 and works in coordination with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to support the Cameroonian government’s efforts to combat HIV, malaria, and other public health threats. CDC, USAID, and the U.S. Department of Defense improve Cameroon’s health sector by strengthening laboratory, surveillance, emergency management and workforce capacity to prevent, detect, and respond to disease outbreaks. USAID and the Department of State’s Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration provide humanitarian assistance to displaced populations by addressing food insecurity and malnutrition, providing health services, promoting agricultural production, and improving livelihoods to meet the basic needs of refugees, internally displaced persons, and vulnerable host communities. The Peace Corps was established in Cameroon in 1962 and has had nearly 3900 Volunteers serve in all ten regions of the country to improve community health, education, and agriculture. In October 2022, Peace Corps Volunteers returned to Cameroon after a two-and-a-half year absence due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Public Diplomacy Section of the U.S. Embassy in Cameroon organizes cultural, educational, and informational exchanges. It maintains an American Center in Yaoundé, supports American Corners in Buea, Garoua, and Douala, and engages Cameroon’s media. To date, 3000 Cameroonians and Americans have participated in two-way educational and professional exchanges sponsored by the U.S. government. Several State Department and USAID funding mechanisms support biodiversity protection, refugees, democratization, respect for human rights, countering violent extremism, and education. The Department of Defense conducts bilateral and multilateral security cooperation activities in coordination with the Cameroonian government. U.S. security assistance strengthens Cameroon’s ability to contain Boko Haram and ISIS-West Africa, assists maritime security in the Gulf of Guinea, contributes to regional stability, strengthens military justice, and promotes respect for human rights.
Bilateral Economic Relations
The United States and Cameroon signed a Bilateral Investment Treaty in 1986 that entered into force in 1989. U.S. goods exports to Cameroon totaled close to $192 million and goods imports from Cameroon totaled $103 million in 2022. On January 1, 2020, Cameroon lost its African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) eligibility due to violations of internationally recognized human rights.
Cameroon’s Membership in International Organizations
Cameroon and the United States belong to many of the same international organizations, including the United Nations, International Monetary Fund, World Bank, and World Trade Organization.
Bilateral Representation Principal embassy officials are listed in the Department’s Key Officers List. Cameroon maintains an embassy in the United States at 2349 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20008. (tel. 202-265-8790). Current Cameroon’s Ambassador is Henri Étoundi Essomba.
More information about Cameroon is available from the Department of State and other sources, some of which are listed here:
CIA World Factbook Cameroon Page
USAID Cameroon Page
History of U.S. Relations With Cameroon
Office of the U.S. Trade Representative Country Page
U.S. Census Bureau Foreign Trade Statistics
Export.gov International Offices Page