By John Okeke
An Advisor, Bank of Ghana, Mrs. Grace Akrofi has affirmed that the achievement of ECOWAS single currency was possible by 2020 in the region.
Akrofi who represented the Governor Central Bank of Ghana at the Workshop for ECOWAS Members of Parliament on the Challenges and Prospects of the ECOWAS Single Currency Programme said the agenda would be realized if the member states are committed.
“The achievement of ECOWAS Single Currency is possible by 2020 if we are committed to it but it demands a lot of commitment from everybody. The lawmakers have a lot. They have to sit down and make sure the protocols and statute are ratified.
“We have postponed it several times but how ready are countries to get on board? A lot of things must be put in place before we can get the monetary union and all of them require financial resources. Are countries and legislators ready to ratify some of the protocols and the status? I think what we have not done is that we have not sensitize the whole population about all the benefits of the single currency to the ECOWAS region. ”
For a stable monetary union, she said, the big economies in the sub-region should be seen driving the process in terms of satisfying the convergence criteria before the 2020 launch.
The Minister of Regional Integration, Cape Verde , Dr. Julio Cesar Herbert Duarte Lopes said Single currency will enhance the regional integration.
Also speaking, the Director General of National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies (NILDS), Pro. Ladi Hamalai said one of the challenges confronting the achievement of the Single Currency in the region was the low political will to ensure compliance with agreed protocols and conventions.
For example, she said while some member countries have ratified the legal instruments such as the statute, others are yet to ratify and domesticate some of the legal instruments which are pre-requisites for monetary integration in the sub-region.