Friday 19 January 2018

Morocco ready to use ECOWAS’ single currency once adopted

Morocco ready to use ECOWAS’ single currency once adopted
(Agence Ecofin 08/31/17)
Morocco ready to use ECOWAS’ single currency once adopted

Morocco is willing to use the planned single ECOWAS currency. This was announced yesterday by the president of ECOWAS Commission, Marcel De Souza , while visiting the capital city of the Cherifian kingdom. “Morocco is ready to adhere to the use of a single currency the day it will be adopted by the ECOWAS,” reads a letter from King Mohammed VI cited by M. De Souza.

The announcement comes after De Souza, earlier this month, said the implementation of a single currency should take another decade.

On June 4, in Monrovia, Liberia’s capital, the council of Presidents of ECOWAS approved the memorandum of understanding for the integration of Morocco to the region. M. De Souza’s visit to Morocco, according to the Moroccan minister of Foreign Affairs, Nasser Bourita, comes ahead of definitive approval of the integration, which should take place on December 16, 2017, in Lome.

In details, leaders of ECOWAS and those of the Cherifian Kingdom will have to agree on some “diplomatic, and most importantly legal measures to seal the additional treaty which will grant Morocco the right to be become a full member of ECOWAS,” Marcel De Souza told the press.

Recalling the historic nature of the relationships of Morocco and the sub-region, the president of ECOWAS commission, emphasized on Morocco’s interests in West Africa. For example, Morocco’s Attijariwafa Bank is present in almost half of ECOWAS’ member-states. There is also the Bank of Africa group (BOA), which is present in eight member-states of the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU), and many other firms operating in various sectors such as health, agrofood, etc.

Yet, it remains a major challenge both in the short and long terms. “This is a Brexit-free union, no possible divorce, it must be well prepared. Morocco will join a market of 340 million consumers and agree to trade liberalization and a common external tariff. ECOWAS has 6,000 tariff lines and Morocco has 17,800, these must be harmonized in the long run,” concludes the former Beninese minister.

Fiacre E. Kakpo

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