ECOWAS Set 2020 as Deadline to Begin the Use One Currency


The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has announced that it has set 2020 as deadline for the commencement of its single currency policy in all ECOWAS region.

The announcement was made in Calabar on Monday by the Director of Strategic Planning, ECOWAS Commission, Mr. Essien Abel.

He said, the committee is working assiduously towards ensuring that it succeeds in meeting the target set for the use of the currency in the sub region. According to Essien, the committee would do its work on the modalities for the implementation of the expected monetary policy while the implementation would largely depend on the Heads of State of member country of ECOWAS.

“The 2020 vision seeks to create a borderless, peaceful, prosperous and cohesive region built on good governance. It will also give people the capacity to access and harness its enormous resources through the creation of opportunities for sustainable development and environmental preservation,” Essien said at a meeting on Strategic Planning Framework for 2016 – 2020 in Calabar, Nigeria.

“The 2016-2020 vision is specifically to ensure congruence of purpose and to ensure the effective mobilisation and utilisation of the region’s abundant resources and comparative advantage. It will also provide the general framework for advancing integration wok in the region and guiding national development planning process.’’
Essien said the meeting was organised to harvest ideas and inputs that would lead to the preparation of strategic documents that reflect the aspiration of ECOWAS vision 2020.

To accomplish the single currency goal, member countries are required to implement a number of measures including: Adoption of a market based exchange rate system, micro-economic convergence, removal of trade barriers, the factor of statistical harmonisation, putting in place a payment system infrastructure as well as other facilities that would promote the conduct of monetary policy within the zone.

Head of ECOWAS National Unit, Ghana, Mr. Bonaventure Adjavor, who chaired the meeting, said, the fact that ECOWAS countries use different official languages such as French, English and Portuguese, the Commission would ensure the use of single currency note from 2020.
He said “I do not see language as a barrier to single currency, the process to adopt the currency is ongoing and a new timetable has been set for 2020.

“We need to work towards that and achieve the vision 2020. The move for this currency was agreed by Heads of Government of ECOWAS countries in June 2001 but it was not realised.“We have put in place all frameworks to ensure that the single currency note is achieved in 2020,” Essien said.