Ghana’s government indicated interest to join a West African currency that will replace the France-backed CFA franc as soon as next year in eight regional countries, but it urged members of the currency union to ditch a planned peg to the euro.
“We, in Ghana, are determined to do whatever we can to enable us join the Member States of UEMOA, soon, in the use of the Eco, as, we believe, it will help remove trade and monetary barriers,” President Nana Akufo-Addo’s office said in a statement.
However, the statement indicated that Ghana opposed plans to keep the eco pegged to the euro, urging regional authorities to work quickly toward “adopting a flexible exchange rate regime”.
The countries due to change from the CFA franc to the eco are Benin, Burkina Faso, Guinea-Bissau, Ivory Coast, Mali, Niger, Senegal and Togo – all former French colonies except Guinea-Bissau.
The group is aiming to have the new currency up and running by the end of 2020.
CFA Franc to Eco
President Alassane Ouattara of Côte d’Ivoire and French President Emmanuel Macron announced earlier this month that West Africa’s monetary union had agreed to stop using Colonial-Era currency ‘CFA franc’, and also sever financial links with France.
Under the deal, the Eco will remain pegged to the euro but the African countries in the bloc won’t have to keep half of their reserves in the French Treasury and a French representative will no longer sit on the currency union’s board.