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Design and Implementation of a Common Currency Area in the East African Community

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  • Thomas Kigabo RUSUHUZWA
  • Paul Robert MASSON

Abstract

The East African Community (EAC) has fast-tracked its plans to create a single currency for the five countries making up the region, and hopes to conclude negotiations on a monetary union protocol by the end of 2012. While the benefits of lower transactions costs from a common currency may be significant, countries will also lose the ability to use monetary policy to respond to different shocks. Evidence presented shows that the countries differ in a number of respects, facing asymmetric shocks and different production structures. Countries have had difficulty meeting convergence criteria, most seriously as concerns fiscal deficits. Preparation for monetary union will require effective institutions for macroeconomic surveillance and enforcing fiscal discipline, and euro zone experience indicates that these institutions will be difficult to design and take a considerable time to become effective. This suggests that a timetable for monetary union in the EAC should allow for a substantial initial period of institution building. In order to have some visible evidence of the commitment to monetary union, in the meantime the EAC may want to consider introducing a common basket currency in the form of notes and coin, to circulate in parallel with national currencies.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Toronto, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number tecipa-451.

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Length: Unknown pages
Date of creation: 04 Apr 2012
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Handle: RePEc:tor:tecipa:tecipa-451

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Keywords: EAC monetary union; fiscal surveillance; optimum currency areas; parallel currencies; regional integration;

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References

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  1. Steven K. Buigut & Neven Valev, 2004. "Is the Proposed East African Monetary Union an Optimal Currency Area? A Structural Vector Autoregression Analysis," International Center for Public Policy Working Paper Series, at AYSPS, GSU paper0407, International Center for Public Policy, Andrew Young School of Policy Studies, Georgia State University.
  2. Kishor, N. Kundan & Ssozi, John, 2009. "Is the East African Community an Optimum Currency Area?," MPRA Paper 17645, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  3. Lars Jonung & Fredrik Sjöholm, 1999. "Should Finland and Sweden Form a Monetary Union?," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 22(5), pages 683-700, 07.
  4. Mackinnon, J.G. & Haug, A.A. & Michelis, L., 1996. "Numerical Distribution Functions of Likelihood Ratio Tests for Cointegration," G.R.E.Q.A.M. 96a09, Universite Aix-Marseille III.
  5. Christopher Adam & Pantaleo Kessy & Camillus Kombe & Stephen A. O'Connell, 2012. "Exchange Rate Arrangements in the Transition to East African Monetary Union," Economics Series Working Papers WPS/2012-07, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  6. Kenen,Peter B., 2000. "The International Economy," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521644358, October.
  7. Enders, Walter & Hurn, Stan, 1994. "Theory and Tests of Generalized Purchasing-Power Parity: Common Trends and Real Exchange Rates in the Pacific Rim," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 2(2), pages 179-90, June.
  8. Xavier Debrun & Catherine A. Pattillo & Paul R. Masson, 2010. "Should African Monetary Unions Be Expanded? An Empirical Investigation of the Scope for Monetary Integration in Sub-Saharan Africa," IMF Working Papers 10/157, International Monetary Fund.
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Cited by:
  1. Paluku Kazimoto, 2014. "The Role of Single currency for Countries Economic Development: a Case Study of the East African Community," International Journal of Academic Research in Accounting, Finance and Management Sciences, Human Resource Management Academic Research Society, International Journal of Academic Research in Accounting, Finance and Management Sciences, vol. 4(2), pages 136-143, April.
  2. Laetitia Lepetit & Clovis Rugemintwari & Frank Strobel, 2012. "Monetary, Financial and Fiscal Stability in the East African Community: Ready for a Monetary Union?," Working Papers hal-00916699, HAL.

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