Central African CFA franc
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The Central African CFA franc (
French
French
: ''franc CFA'' or simply ''franc'',
ISO 4217 ISO 4217 is a standard Standard may refer to: Flags * Colours, standards and guidons * Standard (flag), a type of flag used for personal identification Norm, convention or requirement * Standard (metrology), an object that bears a defin ...
code: ''XAF'') is the currency of six independent states in
Central Africa Central Africa is a subregion of the Africa, African continent comprising various countries according to different definitions. Angola, Burundi, Cameroon, the Central African Republic, Chad, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Republic ...

Central Africa
:
Cameroon Cameroon (, french: Cameroun), officially the Republic of Cameroon (french: République du Cameroun, links=no), is a country in west 250px, A compass rose with west highlighted in black West or Occident is one of the four cardinal direc ...

Cameroon
,
Central African Republic The Central African Republic (CAR; sg, Ködörösêse tî Bêafrîka; french: République centrafricaine, RCA; , or , ) is a landlocked country in Central Africa. It is bordered by Chad to Central African Republic–Chad border, the north, Suda ...
,
Chad Chad (; ar, تشاد , ; french: Tchad, ), officially known as the Republic of Chad ( ar, جمهورية تْشَاد, link=no '; ), is a country at the crossroads of -. Chad is bordered by to , to , the to , to , to (at ), and ...

Chad
,
Republic of the Congo The Republic of the Congo ( french: République du Congo, mkw, Repubilika ya Kôngo), also known as Congo-Brazzaville, the Congo Republic or simply either Congo or the Congo, is a country located in the western coast of Central Africa ...
,
Equatorial Guinea Equatorial Guinea ( es, Guinea Ecuatorial; french: Guinée équatoriale; pt, Guiné Equatorial), officially the Republic of Equatorial Guinea ( es, link=no, República de Guinea Ecuatorial, french: link=no, République de Guinée équatoriale, ...

Equatorial Guinea
and
Gabon Gabon (; ), officially the Gabonese Republic (french: République gabonaise), is a country on the west coast of . Located on the , Gabon is bordered by to the northwest, to the north, the on the east and south, and the to the west. It has ...

Gabon
. These six countries have a combined population of 55.2 million people (as of 2020), and a combined GDP of US$113.322 billion (as of 2020). CFA stands for ''Coopération financière en Afrique centrale'' ("Financial Cooperation in Central Africa"). It is issued by the
Bank of Central African States 300px, BEAC is the central bank of the states in red. The Bank of Central African States (french: Banque des États de l'Afrique Centrale, BEAC) is a central bank A central bank, reserve bank, or monetary authority is an institution that ...
(BEAC; ''Banque des États de l'Afrique Centrale''), located in
Yaoundé Yaoundé (; , ) is the Capital city, capital of Cameroon and, with a population of more than 2.8 million, the second-largest city in the country after the port city Douala. It lies in the Centre Region (Cameroon), Centre Region of the nation at an ...
,
Cameroon Cameroon (, french: Cameroun), officially the Republic of Cameroon (french: République du Cameroun, links=no), is a country in west 250px, A compass rose with west highlighted in black West or Occident is one of the four cardinal direc ...

Cameroon
, for the members of the
Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa The Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS; french: Communauté Économique des États de l'Afrique Centrale, CEEAC; es, Comunidad Económica de los Estados de África Central, CEEAC; pt, Comunidade Económica dos Estados da Áfri ...
(CEMAC; ''Communauté Économique et Monétaire de l'Afrique Centrale''). The franc is nominally subdivided into 100 ''
centime Centime (from la, centesimus) is French French (french: français(e), link=no) may refer to: * Something of, from, or related to France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a country p ...
s'' but no centime denominations have been issued. In several west African states, the
West African CFA franc The West African CFA franc (french: franc CFA; pt, franco CFA or simply ''franc'', ISO 4217 showing the price in the ISO 4217 code " EUR" (''bottom left'') and not the currency sign € ISO 4217 is a Standardization, standard published by ...
, which is of equal value to the Central African
CFA franc The CFA franc (french: franc CFA, , Franc of the Financial Community of Africa, originally Franc of the French Colonies in Africa, or colloquially ) is the name of two , the , used in eight , and the , used in six Central African countries. Both ...
, is in circulation.


History

The CFA franc was introduced to the French colonies in Equatorial Africa in 1945, replacing the French Equatorial African franc. The Equatorial African colonies and territories using the CFA franc were
Chad Chad (; ar, تشاد , ; french: Tchad, ), officially known as the Republic of Chad ( ar, جمهورية تْشَاد, link=no '; ), is a country at the crossroads of -. Chad is bordered by to , to , the to , to , to (at ), and ...

Chad
, French Cameroun, French Congo,
Gabon Gabon (; ), officially the Gabonese Republic (french: République gabonaise), is a country on the west coast of . Located on the , Gabon is bordered by to the northwest, to the north, the on the east and south, and the to the west. It has ...

Gabon
and Ubangi-Shari. The currency remained in use when these colonies gained their independence.
Equatorial Guinea Equatorial Guinea ( es, Guinea Ecuatorial; french: Guinée équatoriale; pt, Guiné Equatorial), officially the Republic of Equatorial Guinea ( es, link=no, República de Guinea Ecuatorial, french: link=no, République de Guinée équatoriale, ...

Equatorial Guinea
, the only former Spanish colony in the zone, adopted the CFA franc in 1984, replacing the Equatorial Guinean ekwele at a rate of 1 franc = 4 bipkwele. The currency was pegged to the French franc at 1 XAF = 2 French francs from 1948, becoming 1 XAF = 0.02 FRF after introduction of the new franc at 1 FRF = 100 old francs. In 1994 the currency was devalued by half to 1 XAF = 0.01 FRF. From 1999 it has since been pegged to the euro at €1 = 6.55957 FRF = 655.957 XAF.


Criticism

According to the BBC, "critics, such as those leading the anti-CFA movement, say true economic development for the 14 African countries can only be achieved if they get rid of the currency. They argue that in exchange for the guarantees provided by the Trésor public, French treasury, African countries channel more money to France than they receive in aid. They also argue that they have no say in deciding key Monetary policy, monetary policies agreed to by European countries, which are members of the Eurozone."


Coins

In 1948, coins were issued for use in all the colonies (not including French Cameroun) in denominations of 1 and 2 francs. This was the last issue of a 2-franc coin for nearly 50 years. In 1958, 5, 10, and 25 franc coins were added, which were also used in French Cameroun. These bore the name ''Cameroun'' in addition to ''États de l'Afrique Equatoriale''. In 1961, nickel 50-franc coins were introduced, followed by nickel 100-franc pieces in 1966. From 1971, the 100 franc coins were issued for each of the individual member states, depicting the state name in which they were issued. 50 franc coins were also issued in this manner between 1976 and 1996, after being reduced in size. However instead of depicting the state name each was given an identification letter on the top reverse. 50 franc coins with the letter "A" were issued for Chad, "B" for Central African Republic, "C" for Congo, "D" for Gabon, and "E" for Cameroon. In 1976, cupro-nickel 500-franc coins were introduced. From 1985, these were also issued by the individual states. That year also saw the introduction of 5, 25, 50 and 100 franc coins for use in Equatorial Guinea, which had recently joined the monetary union, depicting all titles and information in Spanish instead of the usual French, most notably the denomination as "franco" instead of "franc". Despite titular differences in some of the coinage, all were legal and exchangeable tender in all member nations. In 1996, centralized production of the 100-franc coin was resumed, with a single 500-franc coin reintroduced in 1998. Despite dropping state names and code letters, the overall design of the coins remained relatively unchanged. 2006 saw a redesign of all denominations of coins for the CFA franc, along with the introduction of a 2-franc piece. The 1, 5, 10, and 25 franc coins were reduced in size, while a new bi-metallic 100 franc coin was introduced, along with a new and reduced size 500 franc coin with heightened security features, including laser marking. All newer coins depict the acronym "CEMAC" for "Communauté Économique et Monétaire de l'Afrique Centrale". Older sized coins continue to remain legal tender alongside the newly configured coins. All CFA coins depict both a mint mark, along with an engraver's privy mark. The mint mark is located on the reverse on the left side of the denomination while the engraver's mark is located on the right.


Banknotes

When the CFA franc was introduced, notes issued by the ''Caisse Centrale de la France d'Outre-Mer'' ("Central Cashier of Overseas France") in denominations of 5, 10, 20, 100 and 1000 francs were in circulation. In 1947, a new series of notes was introduced for use in French Equatorial Africa, although the notes did not bear the name of the colonies. Notes were issued in denominations of 5, 10, 20, 50, 100 and 1000 francs, followed by those of 500 francs in 1949, and 5000 francs in 1952. In 1957, the ''Institut d'Émission de l'Afrique Équatoriale Française et du Cameroun'' took over paper money production, issuing all of the earlier denominations except for the 5000-franc bill. In 1961, the ''Banque Centrale des États de l'Afrique Équatoriale et du Cameroun'' took over banknote production, with notes below 100 francs ceasing to be issued. The name of the bank changed to ''Banque Centrale des États de l'Afrique Équatoriale'' in 1963. 10,000-franc notes were introduced in 1968, whilst the 100-franc notes were replaced by coins in 1971. In 1975, the bank name changed again to the ''Banque des États de l'Afrique Centrale'' and the individual states began issuing notes in their own names, in denominations of 500, 1000, 5000 and 10,000 francs. This practice ended in 1993. Since then, the banknotes have been issued with only a letter prominently displayed to distinguish between the issues of the different states. 2000 franc notes were introduced in 1993. The country letter codes are as follows: 1994 series: *C – Congo *E – Cameroon *F – Central African Republic *L – Gabon *N – Equatorial Guinea *P – Chad 2002 series: *A – Gabon *C – Chad *F – Equatorial Guinea *M – Central African Republic *T – Congo *U – Cameroon


See also

*African Central Bank *African and Malagasy Union (AMU) *Council of Arab Economic Unity (CAEU) *Economic Community of West African States * French Equatorial African franc *
West African CFA franc The West African CFA franc (french: franc CFA; pt, franco CFA or simply ''franc'', ISO 4217 showing the price in the ISO 4217 code " EUR" (''bottom left'') and not the currency sign € ISO 4217 is a Standardization, standard published by ...
General: *Monetary union *Economy of Cameroon *Economy of the Central African Republic *Economy of Chad *Economy of the Republic of the Congo *Economy of Equatorial Guinea *Economy of Gabon


References


External links



(Official Site of the Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa)
Central African CFA franc Banknotes
, - , - , - , - , - {{Currencies of Africa Currency unions Fixed exchange rate Currencies introduced in 1945 Currencies of Cameroon