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African Union to Introduce One Passport and Single Currency for Member Countries

As the European Union risks falling apart in the wake of Brexit, regional integration in Africa—once modeled after the EU—is making progress. At the African Union (AU) summit later this month, the AU will introduce a single passport to make travel to all 54 member countries of the union possible. The AU passport is part of an eventual goal of creating a “continent with seamless borders.”

Establishing a single common currency for the AU, while still far off, may not be all that unrealistic. Regional blocs are already moving closer to using a common currency. This week, former Nigerian president Olusegun Obasanjo called on the Economic Community of West African States, better known as ECOWAS, to introduce the “eco” a single currency for West Africa. ECOWAS officials have previously committed to introducing a single currency for the region by 2020.

 “We have decided that our unit of currency will be ‘eco.’ Let us now start using eco. Let eco become our unit of currency,” Obasanjo said at a meeting of the ECOWAS commission on July 4.
 Advocates of a common currencies like the eco say that it would reduce exchange rate uncertainties, attract more foreign investment, and help regional economic integration. Other regional blocs have already moved in this direction. The CFA franc zone, of mostly former French colonies, uses the euro-pegged franc. East African states Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, and Tanzania agreed on a protocol for establishing a common currency among them within the next decade.
 And in southern Africa, the Southern African Development Community is working toward establishing a single currency by 2018. For now, it is piloting a cross-border payment system in countries that already use the rand, South Africa, Lesotho, Swaziland, and Namibia.
A single currency for all of Africa is still far off. In the early 1990s, establishing a monetary union was laid out as a goal to be achieved by around 2020. It has since been put on the back burner with the African Union deciding not to include it as part of its 2063 agenda for integration. Instead, the AU passport would be the first main step.

Written by How Africa


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  1. the main problem i supposse will be the same the eu is having, how to compete internaly preventing monopolies technology and the security concerns, wich will also affect different regions, trying to integrate.

    However the single currency and maintaining regional country independence will also help with this problems.

  2. I am more than glad that AU is steady making movement toward integration of our continent. It has been the dream of our ancestors and continues to be ours and will be so by those who come after us. Before commenting my thought I would like to make the writer of the article aware that the AU is not modeled after EU. In fact AU was well established before EU. When Ghana was freed, AU was established under another name, but as time went the name was changed. The objective was to free the continent and build a united Africa. What changed was some philosophical thought. The former organization believed in strengthening our unity while preserving the autonomous state boundary. While the latter believes in more stronger Unity. EU did not make one passport for Africa to copy. AU was established well before EU, and formed its ideas before EU. Thus the objectives was not modeled after EU. Similarities can be drawn, but that does not mean there is plagiarism.

    I really love the steps that AU is taking in shaping our society. News like this my caffeine to refuel my optimism and encourage me to be happy about our future. It becomes a long lasting mint to my breath, meat to my teeth, warmness to my skin, happiness to my mind and love to melanin.

  3. Please to AU
    for years ago we are still waiting to achieve this dream.
    we wish to accomplish this mission as soon as possible.
    we really need to be well independent with our resources, because Africa will never ever be developed without controlling its own monetary. for now the francophone must countries must stand up too to federate himself economically with new african monetary not CFA.

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