Eco sparks controversy, rejected by ECOWAS member states

Nigeria, Gambia, Ghana, Liberia and Sierra Leone, along with Guinea, all English speaking nations have issued a communique condemning the WAEMU decision to unilaterally rename the CFA franc as the eco.

The move comes after Benin, Burkina Faso, Guinea-Bissau, Côte d’Ivoire, Mali, Niger, Senegal and Togo (WAEMU) most of which are former French colonies decided to change to a new currency this year to be called the Eco.

Prior to the sudden decision that was announced by Allasane Ouattara, the English speaking nations, ECOWAS had declared intentions to constitute a regional currency and independent monetary union. In June 2019, ECOWAS heads of States made an agreement to adopt the common currency in principle.

According to CNCB, “Ouattara’s sudden announcement that the former French colonies and Guinea-Bissau had already drafted details of the deal and set a timescale appears to have caught counterparts off guard.”

Some however hold that the primary challenge will be in the ‘Eco’ being a possible appellation for both currencies, an occurrence set to pose challenges in its use across borders.

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