ECOWAS to Achieve Single Currency, Biometric ID Card by 2020 – Diplomat

  • Trade liberalisation, regional response against epidemics

Senator Iroegbu in Abuja

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) is said to be well on target of establishing a single currency, and the adoption of a single biometric identity card, among others, by 2020.

The Ambassador of Liberia to Nigeria, and Permanent Representative of Liberia to ECOWAS, Prof. Al-Hassan Conteh, disclosed this on Friday in Abuja on the occasion of the celebration of the 41st anniversary of the organisation.

He said that ECOWAS’ record over the last four decades since its founding in meeting its goal of economic development and regional integration is worth celebrating.

Conteh noted that since they “launched Vision 2020 to transform ECOWAS from ECOWAS of States to ECOWAS of peoples, our Community has accomplished meaningful targets and objectives in its strategic planning”.

Among these, he said, is the adoption of a common passport for the free movement of citizens in member-states.

According to him, progress has been made in trade liberalisation, Customs Union, favourable industrial policy, mines development, agriculture and environment, infrastructure-transport, telecommunications and energy.

“Considerable progress has also been made in ECOWAS’ plan to establish a single currency by 2020, and the adoption of a single biometric identity card,” he stated.

Conteh stressed that the organisation now has in place a coordinated capacity for organising an efficient regional response against epidemiological challenges, including the Ebola Virus Disease.

He said: “We have recently witnessed democratic elections in Member States, including Nigeria, Cote d’Ivoire, Togo, Guinea and Burkina Faso, Niger and Benin.

“ECOWAS’ mediation made a big difference in resolving civil wars in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Cote d’Ivoire. And more recently the Community’s role was commendable in the resolution of crises in Burkina Faso, Guinea Bissau, and Mali.”

Further details later