The European Business Council for Africa

Towards a single currency: from CFA franc to the Eco

One important step forwards towards a single currency was made on 21 December 2019 when Ivorian President Alassane Ouattara – who is also the current president of the UEMOA – and French President Emmanuel Macron announced plans to reform the CFA franc, the common currency of the eight UEMOA member countries. Some 134 million people in Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, Niger, Senegal and Togo use the CFA franc. Under the reform plan: the CFA franc will be renamed the “Eco”; France will withdraw from all governance bodies; and the Bank of France will no longer hold half of the foreign reserves. However, the Eco will continue to be pegged to the Euro and France will retain, for the time being, its role as its financial guarantor

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