West African countries will stop using the Financial Community of Africa (CFA) franc currency beginning sometime in 2020, Ivorian President Alassane Ouattara said Saturday.
Eight members of the West African Economic and Monetary Union (UEMOA) reached an agreement to use a new common currency called the ECO.
The ECO was the proposed name for the common currency that the West African Monetary Zone (WAMZ) planned to introduce in the framework of the Economic Community of West African States, or ECOWAS.
Ouattara’s remarks came during a news conference with French President Emmanuel Macron in Ivory Coast’s Abidjan province.
The currency remains pegged to the euro and countries will give up using the colonial era CFA.
The CFA has been used for 74 years and France will remain as the guarantor country in case of crisis.
UEMOA and the 14 African member states of the Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa (CEMAC) have been using two different types of CFA francs in central and west Africa since the colonial period.
The new ECO currency will be put into place in the West African countries, including Benin, Burkina Faso, Guinea Bissau, Ivory Coast, Mali, Niger, Senegal and Togo.
By Alaattin Dogru in Dakar, Senegal