Centrally located at an altitude of 2,500 feet above sea level, Yaoundé serves as the capital city of the Republic of Cameroon. With a population of more than 2.8 million, it is the second-largest city in Cameroon after the port city Douala.
Nicknamed the City with Seven Hills, Yaoundé is in the Guinness World Records as the site where the most-attended business lesson was conducted. The business lesson was attended by 2,464 people in Cameroon’s capital city.
Cameroon emerged as a major market during the slave trade in the sixteenth century. In 1909, Yaoundé became the capital of German Cameroon. Georg Zenker, a German scientist, led a group of people who settled in Yaoundé in 1888.
During World War I, British French and Belgian troops invaded German Cameroon. Yaoundé was occupied by Belgian troops throughout the war. Following the end of World War I, the League of Nations divided Cameroon, giving the British control of the eastern territory and the French control of the remainder of the territory.
From 1940 to 1946, Yaoundé was replaced as the capital of Cameroon by Douala, but after independence, it became the seat of the government of Cameroun in 1960, of the federal government in 1961, and of the united republic in 1972.
Since then, Yaoundé has grown as an administrative and commercial center. It is also a transport hub for road, rail, and air transport. Nsimalen airport is the second busiest and largest public airport in Cameroon. The airport is located 27 km south of the capital in the country’s center province.
The University of Yaoundé was founded in 1962, the city also has schools of education, agriculture, health, engineering, journalism, administration and international relations. Yaoundé contains several small manufacturing and processing industries and is also the market for one of the richest agricultural areas in the country.
Like many other African countries, Cameroon has long suffered from corruption, which dominates almost all the sectors, particularly in the capital city. Most of Yaoundé’s economy is centered on the administrative structure of the civil service and the diplomatic services. Owing to these high-profile central structures, Yaoundé has a higher standard of living and security than the rest of Cameroon.
Major industries in Yaoundé include tobacco, dairy products, beer, clay, glass goods, and timber. Yaoundé is also a regional distribution center for coffee, cocoa, copra, sugar cane, and rubber. Yaoundé has a diversified and productive economy, with the services sector contributing about half of the total domestic production.