The ECOWAS heads of State has just concluded their 55th meeting in Abuja Nigeria where they have taken a strong decision of coming up with a single currency come 2020; where then is the rationale for the Gambia to print a new currency note?
“Beginning in January 2020, countries within the West African sub-region will be able to use a single currency called ECO.
The currency was adopted by the Authority of ECOWAS Heads of State and Government on Saturday in Nigeria’s capital Abuja.
The West African leaders endorsed the currency at their 55th Ordinary Session and approved a road map towards the currency’s issuance in January 2020.
There was a roadmap to ensure that all member countries meet three primary criteria for the adoption of the currency.
Printing a new currency will definitely cost the tax payers lot of thousands if not millions of dalasi. If that is the case is it wise to go ahead with the printing of our new currency next month.
The government of the Gambia is part of the said agreement where we were represented by no other person but a whole President of the state Adama Barrow.
The ECOWAS Chairman President Issoufou Mahamadou has said that the revised roadmap does not affect the date for the issuance of the single currency in January 2020.”
Speaking about the deadline for adoption Mahamadou said “We have not changed that but we will continue with assessment between now and then.
“We are of the view that countries that are ready will launch the single currency and countries that are not yet ready will join the programme as they comply with all six convergence criteria.”
ECOWAS has a combined population of 385 million and was set up in 1975.
It comprises Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo.
Eight of these countries use one currency called the CFA franc. Those are Benin, Burkina Faso, Guinea-Bissau, Ivory Coast, Mali, Niger, Senegal and Togo.
The current decision to adopt one currency is similar to the move made by the European Union to adopt the single currency called Euro.
Since all is set for a unified currency to use by ECOWAS and that includes the Gambia why do we have to print a new currency at this eleventh hours if not to waste state money.
The ministry of Finance should consult the Central Bank on this issue so that the position change; otherwise we will just be wasting our scare resources. This government has always being blaming the poor economy on the previius government. Therefore it will only be in the interest our adjusting to the realities by maintain the old currency for the period of the transition from the old currency to the Eco.