Economic integration and the internal governance of member states: a case study of CEMAC and Cameroon

Leke, Sydonie K.
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Since the attainment of political independence on January 1, 1960, the Republic of Cameroon, like other African countries has pursued integration as a means of achieving short and long-term political and socio-economic development. Regional economic integration and governance are subjects which have been researched in the International Relations and Political Science fields for a very long time, however, very little has been done to dissect the relationship between these two concepts especially within an African context. What then are the missing links between regional economic integration and indicators of governance such as control of corruption, political stability and the rule of law? Is there any significant influence by such regional economically integrated bodies to the internal governance of its member states? This study uses an integrated model of qualitative and quantitative research methods to investigate the linkages between membership of regional economically integrated bodies and internal governance by assessing the impact of the Communauté Économique et Monétaire de l’Afrique Centrale (CEMAC) as an economically integrated body on the governance of its most dominant member, Cameroon. The research uses existing literature and a case study to argue that by allowing the law of direct applicability, member states have given the CEMAC institution a significant amount of power to influence their internal governance and economic policies. The study also concludes that although CEMAC does have a significant influence on the implementation of economic and monetary policies, and rule of law in Cameroon, this influence is experienced to a lesser extent on the country’s control of corruption and political stability. As such, more stringent clauses and compliance laws can be created within the CEMAC mandate in order to ensure a diffusion of various forms of good governance practices in Cameroon and in the region at large.
M.A. University of the Witwatersrand, Faculty of Humanities (International Relations), 2012