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Monetary Union in West Africa; An Agency of Restraint for Fiscal Policies?

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  • Catherine A Pattillo
  • Paul R Masson

Abstract

Could a West African monetary union (either of the non-CFA countries, or all ECOWAS members) be an effective "agency of restraint" on fiscal policies? We discuss how monetary union could affect fiscal discipline and the arguments for explicit fiscal restraints considered in the European Monetary Union literature, and their applicability to West Africa. The empirical evidence, EMU literature, and CFA experience suggest that monetary union could create the temptation for fiscal profligacy through prospects of a bailout, or costs diluted through the membership. Thus, a West African monetary union could promote fiscal discipline only if the hands of the fiscal authorities are also tied by a strong set of fiscal restraints.

Suggested Citation

  • Catherine A Pattillo & Paul R Masson, 2001. "Monetary Union in West Africa; An Agency of Restraint for Fiscal Policies?," IMF Working Papers 01/34, International Monetary Fund.
  • Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:01/34
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    Cited by:

    1. Charalambos Tsangarides & Pierre Ewenczyk & Michal Hulej & Mahvash Saeed Qureshi, 2009. "Are Africa's Currency Unions Good for Trade?," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 56(4), pages 876-918, November.
    2. repec:taf:rjapxx:v:12:y:2007:i:4:p:504-521 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. André, NYEMBWE & Konstantin, KHOLODILIN, 2005. "North-South Asymmetric Relationships : Does the EMU Business Affect Small African Economies ?," Discussion Papers (ECON - Département des Sciences Economiques) 2005032, Université catholique de Louvain, Département des Sciences Economiques.
    4. Hughes Hallett, Andrew & Libich, Jan & Stehlík, Petr, 2007. "Monetary and Fiscal Policy Interaction with Various Degrees and Types of Commitment," CEPR Discussion Papers 6586, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    5. Andre, Nyembwe, 2003. "Monetary Policy, Credibility and Asymmetries : Small African Countries and the EMU Advent," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) 2003011, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES), revised 06 Aug 2002.
    6. Balogun, Emmanuel Dele, 2008. "An alternative reconsideration of macroeconomic convergence criteria for West African Monetary Zone," MPRA Paper 11367, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Sampawende Jules TAPSOBA, 2009. "Union Monétaire en Afrique de l’Ouest: Quelles Réponses à l’Hétérogénéité des Chocs ?," Working Papers 200912, CERDI.
    8. Anthony J. Pellechio & Saqib Rizavi & Phebby Kufa, 2003. "Fiscal Sustainability and Policy Issues in the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union," IMF Working Papers 03/162, International Monetary Fund.
    9. Sampawende Jules Tapsoba, 2011. "Union Monétaire en Afrique de l'Ouest: Quelles Réponses à l'Hétérogénéité des Chocs ?," Working Papers halshs-00554309, HAL.
    10. Chantal Dupasquier & Patrick N. Osakwe & Shandre M. Thangavelu, 2005. "Choice of Monetary and Exchange Regimes in ECOWAS: An Optimum Currency Area Analysis," SCAPE Policy Research Working Paper Series 0510, National University of Singapore, Department of Economics, SCAPE.
    11. Kohnert, Dirk, 2005. "African Monetary Unions - Dominated by the North? On the Relevance of Rational Economic Reasoning Under African Conditions," MPRA Paper 82083, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    12. Jean-Louis Combes & Xavier Debrun & Alexandru Minea & Rene Tapsoba, 2014. "Inflation Targeting and Fiscal Rules; Do Interactions and Sequencing Matter?," IMF Working Papers 14/89, International Monetary Fund.
    13. Ian Lienert, 2003. "A Comparison Between Two Public Expenditure Management Systems in Africa," IMF Working Papers 03/2, International Monetary Fund.
    14. Balogun, Emmanuel Dele, 2009. "Inflation differential in the West African Monetary Zone (WAMZ) area:Implications for unionization," MPRA Paper 13045, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    15. Balogun, Emmanuel Dele, 2009. "Alternative reconsideration of output growth differrential for the West African Monetary Zone," MPRA Paper 13416, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    16. Dorothy Engmann & Ousmane Dore & Benoít Anne, 2003. "Regional Impact of Cote D'Ivoire'S Sociopolitical Crisis; An Assessment," IMF Working Papers 03/85, International Monetary Fund.
    17. Etienne B Yehoue, 2007. "The CFA Arrangements; More than Just An Aid Substitute?," IMF Working Papers 07/19, International Monetary Fund.

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    Keywords

    Africa; Fiscal rules; Fiscal policy; Trade; West Africa; West African Monetary Union; monetary union; fiscal discipline; ECOWAS; CFA franc zone; central bank; inflation; fiscal policies;

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