News / Africa

CFA Zone Says No Plans to Revalue Currency

French Economy Minister Pierre Moscovici (L) speaks beside his Senegalese counterpart Amadou Kane, Apr. 8, 2013, during a press conference in Dakar, following a meeting of ministers of the member countries of the West African franc zone.
French Economy Minister Pierre Moscovici (L) speaks beside his Senegalese counterpart Amadou Kane, Apr. 8, 2013, during a press conference in Dakar, following a meeting of ministers of the member countries of the West African franc zone.
Jennifer Lazuta
Representatives of the West and Central African Franc Zone say the CFA franc, which is currently pegged to the euro, will not be revaluated any time soon.  This is despite concerns over mounting European financial troubles.  The finance ministers of the 15 member countries met this week to discuss the future of the Franc Zone and the CFA.

The Bank of France, along with economic experts and the finance ministers of the 15 African countries in the Franc Zone, believe the current model of the Franc Zone remains relevant.

The Franc Zone is a monetary union of 14 French-speaking sub-Saharan African countries, along with France and the Comoros, whose currency is currently linked to the euro at a fixed rate of exchange.

Senegal’s Minister of Economy and Finance Amadou Kane said that despite the recent financial crisis in Europe, the tie between the CFA and the euro remains strong.

"For nearly 15 years, the CFA has been backed by the euro with no problems.  It is a robust relationship," he said.  "Besides, its value is more than just the exchange rate.  We take into consideration monetary and financial policy."

The CFA was first anchored to the French franc back in 1945.  It was later pegged to the euro when the European Union switched currencies in 1999.  

Emmanuel Rocher, a representative of the Bank of France, says that pegging the CFA to the franc - and then the euro - has offered member countries an element of stability and security, particularly when it comes to foreign investment.

"Europe remains the largest commercial partner of the African Franc Zone," he said.  "More than 60 percent of trade flows take place between the Franc Zone and Europe.  I must add, that the member countries of the Franc Zone experienced economic growth that was six percent higher in 2012 compared to the previous year than other African countries that are not part of the zone."

The last time the CFA was revaluated was in January 1994, when member countries decided to devalue it by 50 percent.  The decision was made based on mounting concerns that the exchange rate favored the African urban elite.

Although the devaluation temporarily caused a surge in local prices, the International Monetary Fund says that the revaluation ultimately promoted exports, expanded the agricultural sector in many countries, and made the countries' local products more competitive in international markets.

Kane says member countries will consider revaluating it in the future, if necessary. 

The next meeting of the Franc Zone finance ministers will take place in October.

You May Like

US Investors Eye IPO for China's Alibaba

E-commerce giant handled 80 percent of China's online business last year, logging more Internet transactions than US-based Amazon.com and eBay combined More

Video Uneasy Calm Settles Over Israel, Gaza Strip

As cease-fire begins, Palestinians celebrate in streets; Israelis remain wary More

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

In treatment of a 12-year-old boy Chinese doctors used a 3-D printer and special software to create an exact replica of vertebra More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implanti
X
August 27, 2014 4:53 PM
A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Uneasy Calm Settles Over Israel, Gaza Strip

Israel and the Gaza Strip have been calm since a cease-fire set in Tuesday evening, ending seven weeks of hostilities. Hamas, which controls Gaza, declared victory. Israelis were more wart. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Video

Video India’s Leprosy Battle Stymied by Continuing Stigma

Medical advancements in the treatment of leprosy have greatly diminished its impact around the world, largely eliminating the disease from most countries. India made great strides in combating leprosy, but still accounts for a majority of the world’s new cases each year, and the number of newly infected Indians is rising - more than 130,000 recorded last year. Doctors there say the problem has more to do with society than science. VOA News reports from Kolkata.
Video

Video Northern California Quake: No Way to Know When Next One Will Hit

A magnitude 6.0 earthquake rocked northern California’s Napa Valley on Sunday. Roads twisted and water mains burst. It was the wine country’s most severe quake in 15 years, and while hospitals treated many people, no one was killed. Arash Arabasadi has more from Washington on what the future may hold for those residents living on a fault line.
Video

Video Scientists Unlock Mystery of Bird Flocks

How can flocks of birds, schools of fish or herds of antelope suddenly change direction -- all the individuals adjusting their movement in concert, at seemingly the same time? British researchers now have some insights into this behavior, which has puzzled scientists for a long time. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video Ukraine: Captured Troops Proof of Russian Role in Separatist Fight

Ukrainian officials say they have captured Russian soldiers on Ukrainian territory -- the latest accusation of Moscow's involvement in the conflict in eastern Ukraine. VOA's Gabe Joselow reports from the Ukrainian side of the battle, where soldiers are convinced of Russia's role.
Video

Video Rubber May Soon Come From Dandelions

Synthetic rubber has been around for more than a century, but quality tires for cars, trucks and aircraft still need up to 40 percent or more natural rubber content. As the source of natural rubber, the rubber tree, is prone to disease and can be affected by bad weather. So scientists are looking for replacements. And as VOA’s George Putic reports, they may have found one in a ubiquitous weed.
Video

Video Jewish Life in Argentina Reflected in Yiddish Tango

Jewish people from across Europe and Russia have been immigrating to Argentina for hundreds of years. They brought with them dance music that were eventually mixed with Argentine tango. The result is Yiddish tango -- a fusion of melodies and cultural experiences that is still evolving today. Elizabeth Lee reports from the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles, where one band is bringing Yiddish tango to an American audience.

AppleAndroid