As many as 15 countries in West Africa have agreed to adopt a single currency, called ECO, in 2020.

Experts are divided on the effect it would have on the region’s economy, especially in the eight member states that use the French-backed CFA franc.

Nigeria is essentially kept out of the currency because the country will not accept the conditionalities established by France. Having the biggest economy in Africa, Nigeria wants to remain the best,  why the country is still having a second thought on the Eco new currency.

 The long delay in establishing the Eco has been caused by the inability of the 15 ECOWAS countries to meet the convergence criteria they set for themselves.

Some finance and economic experts have called on the Federal Government not to rush into joining the West Africa single currency arrangement that would make Nigeria to adopt the “Eco” as its official currency instead of the naira.

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Some of the experts who spoke to our correspondent [ Eric Patrick ]  in a telephone interview said such a move would not be beneficial for Nigeria at this time when many of the ECOWAS countries had yet to meet the convergence criteria set for the monetary union.

Those that spoke included,  Ago-Iwoye professor of economics,  Ogun, Sheriffdeen Tella; the Registrar, Institute of Finance and Control of Nigeria, Mr. Godwin Eohoi; and a developmental economist, Odilim Enwagbara.

Eight West African countries had last week decided to change their currency’s name from CFA to Eco.

The countries were Benin Republic, Burkina Faso, Guinea-Bissau, Ivory Coast, Mali, Niger, Senegal and Togo.

All of these African countries are former French colonies with the exception of Guinea-Bissau.