Equatorial Guinea’s President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo has urged Central African states to consider reforming their French-backed currency, the CFA franc.
The current agreement between the Central Economic and Monetary Union and France on the CFA franc has become “obsolete”, Obiang said during a joint press conference with Ivorian President Alassane Ouattara in Ivory Coast’s commercial capital Abijan on Saturday.
“Today we’re capable of managing our own currency without the interference of France. […] Now that we know West Africa’s decision, maybe we will move to do the same with our French partner”, Obiang underscored.
"Au Revoir CFA Franc" French President Macron has just announced that 8 West African Countries will stop using the CFA Franc. The CFA Franc will be replaced by the ECO. Also France will no longer hold 50% of the West African Countries reserves in the French Treasury. pic.twitter.com/edB84jZU1z— Africa Updates (@africaupdates) December 21, 2019
He referred to an agreement that the West African Economic and Monetary Union ( UEMOA) and France clinched last week to rename the CFA franc the “Eco”.
French President Emmanuel Macron touted the reform as “historic”, adding that “the eco will see the light of day in 2020”.
The agreement stipulates that French officials will no longer be represented on the governing bodies of UEMOA member states’ central banks and that these countries will no longer keep half of their foreign reserves in France.
Established in 1945, the CFA franc is used by eight West African states and six countries in Central Africa, including former French colonies Benin, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Mali, Niger, Senegal, and Togo.