During the COVID-19 pandemic, nightclubs and bars were closed for much of 2020 in order to prevent the spread of the virus in enclosed spaces. Products in this category only have limited availability in Cameroon, with most purchases tied to social occasions and the country’s nightlife.
Smoking tobacco, however, offers good value for money and is on general sale in convenience stores, supermarkets and hypermarkets, all of which remained open during lockdown. Over 2020 as a whole, sales continued to rise at a steady pace as a result of continued sales to cash-strapped smokers, many of whom may lose their jobs.
The availability of cigars in Cameroon was considerably restricted in 2020 due to more stringent import procedures introduced to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the country. Most cigars and cigarillos sold in Cameroon are imported by small tobacco shops, while the majority of these are smuggled into the country.
Over the forecast period, cigars, cigarillos and smoking tobacco is projected to register continued growth, following a steady upwards growth trajectory established over the review period. As a relatively niche category, there is still plenty of room and opportunities for growth in this category.
Over the forecast period, the Cameroonian government may use tobacco taxation increases on smoking tobacco to help pay for its response to COVID-19. This may result in price rises and may lead to some consumers quitting smoking completely, but as smoking tobacco is much cheaper than cigarettes, sales are expected to remain positive over the forecast period as a whole appealing to consumers looking for value-for-money products.
Over the forecast period, the economic ramifications of the COVID-19 crisis are expected to outlast the epidemiological threat of the pandemic. As such, even though COVID-19 social distancing measures will be lifted at the beginning of the forecast period, it is likely to take lower income consumers longer to recover from the difficult financial conditions of the global health crisis.
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Understand the latest market trends and future growth opportunities for the Cigars, Cigarillos and Smoking Tobacco industry in Cameroon with research from Euromonitor International's team of in-country analysts – experts by industry and geographic specialisation.
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This report originates from Passport, our Cigars, Cigarillos and Smoking Tobacco research and analysis database.
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