Cameroon

Member Organizations

Member Organization Associate

  Institute of Chartered Accountants of Cameroon

Legal and Regulatory Environment

  • Overview of Statuatory Framework for Accounting and Auditing

    Cameroon is one of seventeen member states of the Organization for the Harmonization of Business Law in Africa (OHADA), a regional group in Africa aimed at promoting economic growth and development. Legislation issued at the regional level by OHADA has a significant impact on the legal and regulatory framework for commercial entities, banks, financial institutions, and insurance companies in Cameroon as well as on the accountancy profession.

    OHADA sets common business regulations for its member states, including accounting standards, adopts unified commercial laws and other legislative norms that, once adopted, become domestic laws in its member states. Cameroon harmonizes national laws with directives issued at the regional level.

    Accounting Framework

    In January 2017, the Commission de Normalisation Comptable de l’OHADA (CNC)-OHADA, established in 2009 through an OHADA Uniform Act, adopted the OHADA Uniform Act on Accounting and Financial Information (AUDCIF) to update the previous OHADA Uniform Act on Organizing and Harmonizing Company Accounting Systems 2/2000. The previous Act had outlined the OHADA Accounting System and applicable standards—known as SYSCOHADA.

    The OHADA AUDCIF revised the SYSCOHADA, namely the OHADA general accounting plan, as well as the consolidated and combined accounting rules to serve as a single accounting reference in all OHADA member states. The OHADA AUDCIF became effective on January 1, 2018 for individual accounts and on January 1, 2019 for consolidated accounts. The SYSCOHADA continue to differ from the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) and are generally applied by small and medium-sized entities (SMEs); however, the AUDCIF now requires that listed companies and companies seeking financing in a public capital market apply IFRS in consolidated statements. All other companies are permitted but not required to use IFRS.

    Auditing Framework

    The OHADA Uniform Act Relating to Commercial Companies and Economic Interest Groups 4/1997 (revised January 2014) stipulates that statutory audits are mandatory for all public companies, limited liability companies (LLCs) and partnerships that exceed one of these three thresholds: (i) total balance sheet in excess of CFA franc 125 million; (ii) sales volume greater than CFA franc 250 million; or (iii) more than 50 permanent employees with a total balance sheet in excess of CFA franc 250 million and sales volume of CFA franc 500 million. Banking and insurance legislations also require mandatory audits of banks, financial institutions, and insurance companies.

    In June 2017, the OHADA issued Regulation No. 01/2017/CM/OHADA Pratiques Professionelles de la Comptabilité et de l’Audit dans les pays membres de l’OHADA to harmonize regional auditing standards with international best practice. The regulation, effective from January 1, 2018, states that all audits must be conducted in accordance with the International Standards on Auditing (ISA) as issued by the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (IAASB). Therefore, ISA as issued by IAASB are effective in Cameroon as of the date of the assessment.

  • Regulation of Accountancy Profession

    The Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa (CEMAC), a regional organization of which Cameroon is a member state, was established to promote sub-regional integration. In 2001, the Council of Ministers of CEMAC issued Regulation n° 11/01-UREC-027-CM-07 of 05 December 2001 to revise and reclassify the status of independent accounting professionals to Public Accountants and Decision N° 30/01-UEAC-027-CM-07 of 05 December 2001 requiring the establishment of professional accountancy organizations in all the member states to harmonize the regulation of Public Accountants.

    CEMAC establishes regional-level initial professional development (IPD) requirements for the accountancy profession, which are transposed and implemented by each member state. The regulations issued in 2001 declare that candidates who wish to become CEMAC-accredited Public Accountants must be holders of a public accountancy diploma certification, or an advanced diploma in accountancy that is recognized by competent authorities. In practice, this is the French Diplôme d’expertise comptable (DEC). Obtaining the DEC consists of three stages that the candidate must pass. The first is an aptitude exam to assess the candidate’s ability to participate in an advanced accountancy training program. Candidates must have a bachelor’s degree to sit for the exam. Candidates may then progress to advanced program and the accompanying diploma (Diplôme d’Etudes Comptables Supérieures – DECS), which assesses technical knowledge. Subsequently, the candidate is required to undergo a three-year internship in a chartered accountancy firm. The DEC is awarded to candidates who have undergone the highest level of training in accounting, auditing, organization, management, and management information systems and successful present a dissertation. Individuals must then receive authorization from CEMAC and register with a PAO in their jurisdiction as a Public Accountant to offer any accountancy services. Only Public Accountants may perform the duties of a statutory auditor. The implementation of the education and training process varies by CEMAC member states, however, due to capacity.

    At a national level, Law No. 2011/009 Relating to the Practice of the Accounting Profession and the Functioning of the ONECCA-Cameroon regulates the accountancy profession and the activities of the Ordre National des Experts-Comptables du Cameroon (ONECCA-Cameroon). Law No. 2011/009 further details the CEMAC IPD requirements and stipulates that candidates must hold a professional accounting diploma recognized by the State of Cameroon, complete three years of practical experience, and pass written and verbal examinations organized by ONECCA-Cameroon to ensure candidates have sufficient knowledge of the Cameroonian institutional, legal, and fiscal environment. They must then join ONECCA-Cameroon as a member and receive authorization from CEMAC to practice. In partnership with INTEC-Paris (Institut national des techniques économiques et comptables (National Institute of Economic and Accounting Techniques)), ONECCA-Cameroon has established INTEC-ONECCA within Cameroon as a center of higher education that delivers the DEC qualification. Candidates that have a bachelor’s degree can follow a similar three-stage path outlined above, earning the French Diploma in Management and Accounting (DGC), a Higher Degree of Management and Accounting (DSGC), and finally the DEC. ONECCA-Cameroon states that the training program provided at ONECCA-INTEC in partnership with INTEC-Paris is aligned with international standards.

    The institute’s other responsibilities are to: (i) rule on membership applications and maintain a register of professional accountants; (ii) set and monitor compliance with continuous professional development requirements; (iii) ensure compliance with the requirements of global and regional standards; (iv) establish and implement quality control standards and a quality assurance review system; (v) establish an investigation and discipline system for its members; and (vi) set ethical requirements. Technical standards (e.g. accounting and audit) are outlined in the respective Organization for the Harmonization of Business Law in Africa (OHADA) regulations—OHADA Uniform Act on Accounting and Financial Information (AUDCIF) and Regulation No. 01/2017/CM/OHADA Pratiques Professionelles de la Comptabilité et de l’Audit dans les pays membres de l’OHADA.

  • Audit Oversight Arrangements

    There is no independent audit oversight authority in Cameroon.

    Auditors are first regulated at the regional level by Regulation n° 11/01-UREC-027-CM-07 of 05 December 2001 and Decision N° 30/01-UEAC-027-CM-07 of 05 December 2001 issued by the Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa (CEMAC)—a regional organization of which Cameroon is a member state. CEMAC establishes regional-level initial professional development (IPD) requirements for the accountancy profession, which are transposed and implemented by each member state. In line with this requirement only professional accountants authorized by CEMAC and registered by a PAO in the CEMAC region as a Public Accountant may perform the duties of a statutory auditor.

    Furthermore, Cameroon is also a member state of the Organization for the Harmonization of Business Law in Africa (OHADA). In June 2017, the OHADA issued Regulation No. 01/2017/CM/OHADA Pratiques Professionelles de la Comptabilité et de l’Audit dans les pays membres de l’OHADA to harmonize regional auditing standards with international best practice. The regulation, effective from January 1st, 2018, states that all audits must be conducted in accordance with the International Standards on Auditing (ISA) as issued by the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (IAASB). Further, the regulation states that effective from January 1, 2018, professional accountants in OHADA member states must adhere to the OHADA Code of Ethics, which is based on the 2015 IESBA Code of Ethics, as well as the relevant parts of the OHADA Uniform Act on Accounting Law and Financial Information (AUDCIF).

    Finally, at a national level, Law No. 2011/009 Relating to the Practice of the Accounting Profession and the Functioning of the ONECCA-Cameroon regulates the accountancy profession and the activities of the Ordre National des Experts-Comptables du Cameroon (ONECCA-Cameroon). In addition to supporting the implementation of CEMAC’s established initial professional developments and OHADA’s accountancy standards’ framework, the institute’s functions are to: (i) rule on membership applications and maintain a register of professional accountants; (ii) set and monitor compliance with continuous professional development requirements; (iii) ensure compliance with the requirements of global and regional standards; (iv) establish and implement quality control standards and a quality assurance review system; (v) establish an investigation and discipline system for its members; and (vi) set ethical requirements.

  • Professional Accountancy Organizations

    Ordre National des Experts-Comptables du Cameroun (ONECCA-Cameroon)

    ONECCA-Cameroon was established in 1985 under the Law No. 85/11. In accordance with Law No. 2011/009 Relating to the Practice of the Accounting Profession and the Functioning of the ONECCA-Cameroon, ONECCA-Cameroon is authorized to regulate the national accountancy profession abiding by regulation issued at the regional level by the Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa (CEMAC). Membership in ONECCA-Cameroon is mandatory for Public Accountants. In addition to supporting the implementation of CEMAC’s established initial professional developments, the institute’s functions are to: (i) rule on membership applications and maintain a register of professional accountants; (ii) set and monitor compliance with continuous professional development requirements; (iii) ensure compliance with the requirements of global and regional standards; (iv) establish and implement quality control standards and a quality assurance review system; (v) establish an investigation and discipline system for its members; and (vi) set ethical requirements.

    In addition to being a member of IFAC, ONECCA-Cameroon is a member of the Association of Accountancy Bodies in West Africa, the Pan African Federation of Accountants (PAFA), and the International Federation of Francophone Accountants (FIDEF).

  • Projects or Other Information

Adoption of International Standards

  • Quality Assurance

    In 2001, the Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa (CEMAC) issued Regulation n° 11/01-UREC-027- CM-07 of 5 December 2001 which states that all professional accountants in public practice must comply with quality control standards. CEMAC additionally delegated the responsibility for quality assurance (QA) reviews to national PAOs.

    Similarly, in June 2017, the Organization for the Harmonization of Business Law in Africa (OHADA) issued Regulation No. 01/2017/CM/OHADA Pratiques Professionelles de la Comptabilité et de l’Audit dans les pays membres de l’OHADA mandating PAOs within OHADA member states to develop and implement QA review systems.

    Cameroon is a member state of both regional communities and as such, the Ordre National des Experts-Comptables du Cameroun (ONECCA-Cameroon) is responsible for adopting and implementing appropriate procedures nationally.

    ONECCA-Cameroon commenced QA reviews with the partnership and support of the International Cooperation of the French Accountancy Profession (DDPI) and financing from the World Bank. In June 2017, a DDPI consultant visited 12 firms that serve public interest entities to carry out QA reviews and issue reports. Subsequently, ONECCA-Cameroon has continued to carry out reviews among member firms in 2019 and expects to complete the first cycle by December 2021. ONECCA-Cameroon confirms the QA reviews are conducted in accordance with SMO 1 except that this first phase of reviews is voluntary. The second cycle will be mandatory.

    Current Status: Partially Adopted

  • International Education Standards

    The Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa (CEMAC) issued Regulation n° 11/01-UREC-027-CM-07 of 05 December 2001 to revise and reclassify the status of independent accounting professionals to Public Accountants and Decision N° 30/01-UEAC-027-CM-07 of 05 December 2001 requiring the establishment of professional accountancy organizations in all the member states to harmonize the regulation of Public Accountants.

    CEMAC sets regional-level initial professional development requirements for the accountancy profession that are to be transposed and implemented in each member state. The regulations issued in 2001 outline that candidates who wish to become CEMAC-accredited Public Accountants must be holders of a public accountancy diploma certification, or an advanced diploma in accountancy that is recognized by competent authorities. In practice, this is the French Diplôme d’expertise comptable (DEC). Obtaining the DEC consists of three stages that the candidate must pass. The first is an aptitude exam to assess the candidate’s ability to participate in an advanced accountancy training program. Candidates must have a bachelor’s degree to sit for the exam. Candidates may then progress to advanced program and the accompanying diploma (Diplôme d’Etudes Comptables Supérieures – DECS), which assesses technical knowledge. The candidate is required to undergo a three-year internship in a chartered accountancy firm. Subsequently, the DEC is awarded to candidates who have undergone the highest level of training in accounting, auditing, organization, management, and management information systems. According to the Compagnie Nationale des Commissaires aux Comptes (CNCC) and Conseil Supérieur de l’Ordre des Experts-Comptables (CSOEC), the DEC qualification is aligned with the 2015 IES requirements.

    After obtaining the DEC and presenting a dissertation, individuals must receive authorization from CEMAC and register with a PAO in their jurisdiction as a Public Accountant to offer any accountancy services. The implementation of the education and training process varies by CEMAC member states, however, due to capacity.

    At a national level, Law No. 2011/009 Relating to the Practice of the Accounting Profession and the Functioning of the ONECCA-Cameroon regulates the accountancy profession and the activities of the Ordre National des Experts-Comptables du Cameroon (ONECCA-Cameroon). Law No. 2011/009 further details the CEMAC IPD requirements and stipulates that candidates must hold a professional accounting diploma recognized by the State of Cameroon, complete three years of practical experience, and pass written and verbal examinations organized by ONECCA-Cameroon to ensure candidates have sufficient knowledge of the Cameroonian institutional, legal, and fiscal environment.

    In Cameroon, ONECCA-Cameroon has established INTEC-ONECCA in partnership with INTEC-Paris (Institut national des techniques économiques et comptables (National Institute of Economic and Accounting Techniques)) as a center of higher education that provides IPD education and delivers the DEC qualification. The institute affirms that the training program provided at INTEC-ONECCA is aligned with international standards.

    Law No.2011/009 also permits ONECCA-Cameroon to establish continuing professional development requirements. Through Decree N° 00000120/MINFI of 16 July 2012, the institute has determined members must fulfill 120 hours of CPD over three years.

    It is not clear from the available information if all the IPD requirements (e.g. INTEC-ONECCA programming; practical experience; final assessment) align with the 2019 IES requirements.

    Additionally, among the Organization for the Harmonization of Business Law in Africa (OHADA), of which Cameroon is also a member state, CEMAC, and the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU), there is a Chartered Accountant Diploma and curriculum reform under consideration that would enable accountancy education (IES 1–4) to align with the latest IES requirements and the French licence-master-doctorat (Bachelor's-Master's-Doctorate) system.

    Current Status: Partially Adopted

  • International Standards on Auditing

    The Organization for the Harmonization of Business Law in Africa (OHADA) Uniform Act Relating to Commercial Companies and Economic Interest Groups 4/1997 (revised January 2014) stipulates that statutory audits are mandatory for all public companies and limited liability companies (LLCs) that exceed determined thresholds. Banking and insurance legislations also require mandatory audits of banks, financial institutions, and insurance companies.

    In June 2017, the OHADA issued Regulation No. 01/2017/CM/OHADA Pratiques Professionelles de la Comptabilité et de l’Audit dans les pays membres de l’OHADA to harmonize regional auditing standards with international best practice. The regulation states that effective from January 1, 2018, all audits in member states, which includes Cameroon, must be conducted in accordance with ISA as issued by the IAASB including effective date, and any amendments and revisions.

    Cameroon is also a member state of the Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa (CEMAC), which has authority to determine the applicability of OHADA regulations within the CEMAC zone. Although Section 5 of the Law No. 2011/009 Relating to the Practice of the Accounting Profession and the Functioning of the ONECCA-Cameroon stipulates that members of ONECCA must adhere to regional and international standards, the institute indicates that they are subject to final approval by CEMAC. ONECCA-Cameroon confirms that the OHADA regulations are in force in the jurisdiction and that ISA are effective as issued by the IAASB.

    Current Status: Adopted

  • Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants

    At the regional level, the Organization for the Harmonization of Business Law in Africa (OHADA) issued Regulation No. 01/2017/CM/OHADA Pratiques Professionelles de la Comptabilité et de l’Audit dans les pays members de l’OHADA to harmonize regional ethical requirements with international best practice.

    The regulation states that effective from January 1, 2018, professional accountants in OHADA member states must adhere to the OHADA Code of Ethics, which is based on the 2015 IESBA Code of Ethics and complemented by the ethical requirements related to the external auditor as contained in the OHADA Uniform Act on Accounting Law and Financial Information (AUDCIF).

    Cameroon is also subject to regulations issued by the Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa (CEMAC), which has authority to determine the applicability of OHADA regulations within the CEMAC zone. Although Section 5 of the Law No. 2011/009 Relating to the Practice of the Accounting Profession and the Functioning of the ONECCA-Cameroon authorizes ONECCA-Cameroon to set ethical requirements nationally for professional accountants, the institute indicates that they are subject to final approval by CEMAC. ONECCA-Cameroon confirms that the OHADA Code of Ethics is applicable in the jurisdiction.

    Current Status: Partially Adopted

  • International Public Sector Accounting Standards

    At the regional level, the Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa (CEMAC) has set general rules on public accounting (Directive n° 02/08-UEAC-190-CM-17) and a government accounting plan (Directive n° 05/08-UEAC-190-CM-17).

    In 2011, CEMAC issued Directive No. 02/11-UEAC-190-CM-22 which aimed to align public sector accounting standards with international best practices and standards.

    Nationally, the Cameroonian government is responsible for implementing public sector accounting standards, which ONECCA states differ from IPSAS. There is no official plans or timeline for the adoption of accrual IPSAS.

    Current Status: Not Adopted

  • Investigation and Discipline

    At the regional level, the World Bank is supporting the Organization for the Harmonization of Business Law in Africa (OHADA) in the development of an I&D system for its member states. There is no further information available currently on the status of a regional I&D system. There are provisions within the OHADA’s Uniform Act on Accounting Law and Financial Information (AUDCIF) that stipulate sanctions for non-compliance with the Act and these have been transposed into legislation at the national law.

    Furthermore, at the national level, Law No. 2011/009 Relating to the Practice of the Accounting Profession and the Functioning of the ONECCA-Cameroon, authorizes ONECCA-Cameroon to establish an I&D system for professional accountants for breaches of conduct and non-compliance.

    ONECCA-Cameroon has established two bodies responsible for the I&D of its members: an Investigation and Disciplinary Committee and a Trial and Appeals Chamber. The Trial and Appeals Chamber is charged by a magistrate of the Supreme Court and is appointed by the President of the Supreme Court.

    ONECCA-Cameroon conducted a self-assessment—located within its SMO Action Plan—of its existing I&D mechanisms against the revised SMO 6 requirements. It noted gaps in the areas of: composition of the disciplinary committee to include non-accountants, the full separation of the investigation and disciplinary committees, and regular reviews of its procedures.

    Current Status: Partially Adopted

  • International Financial Reporting Standards

    The corporate financial framework of Cameroon is determined by legislation issued by the Organization for the Harmonization of Business Law in Africa (OHADA). Cameroon harmonizes national laws with directives issued at the regional level.

    In January 2017, the Commission de Normalisation Comptable de l’OHADA (CNC)-OHADA, established in 2009 through an OHADA Uniform Act, adopted the OHADA Uniform Act on Accounting and Financial Information (AUDCIF) to update the previous OHADA Uniform Act on Organizing and Harmonizing Company Accounting Systems 2/2000. The previous Act had outlined the OHADA Accounting System and applicable standards—known as SYSCOHADA.

    The OHADA AUDCIF revised the SYSCOHADA, namely the OHADA general accounting plan, as well as the consolidated and combined accounting rules in order to serve as a single accounting reference in all OHADA member states. The OHADA AUDCIF became effective on January 1, 2018 for individual accounts and on January 1, 2019 for consolidated and combined accounts. The SYSCOHADA continue to differ from the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) and are generally applied by small and medium-sized entities (SMEs); however, the AUDCIF now requires that listed companies and companies seeking financing in a public capital market to apply IFRS in consolidated statements. All other companies are permitted but not required to use IFRS.

    Current Status: Partially Adopted

Disclaimer

IFAC bears no responsibility for the information provided in the SMO Action Plans prepared by IFAC member organizations. Please see our full Disclaimer for additional information.

 

Methodology

Methodology
Last updated: 10/2020
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