Union Monétaire en Afrique de l’Ouest: Quelles Réponses à l’Hétérogénéité des Chocs ?
Since the independences, having a single currency is an official policy objective of West African countries. In April 2000, West African decisions-makers decided to accelerate the integration of the region by creating a second monetary zone in addition to the WAEMU (West African Economic and Monetary Union). On economic grounds, several academics argue that a monetary union in West Africa would be costly because of the predominance of asymmetric shocks. When shocks are divergent, a common monetary policy is inappropriate and ineffective. This conclusion is however static and does not include structural changes that happen after the creation of a monetary union. The launch of monetary union helps countries to cope with asymmetric shocks. This article proposes the analysis of mechanisms that a West African Monetary Union could develop in order to alleviate the costs of asymmetric shocks. The results suggest that a West African currency could be OCA (Optimal Currency Areas) compliant by the intensification of regional trade and the development of regional credit markets which facilitate the risk-sharing strategies.
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