Tarek Amer, the governor of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE), has called upon African governments to enhance the independence of central banks and pave the way for them to achieve monetary stability and discipline.
Amer stressed that this step is the actual first one on the road toward meeting the criteria of economic convergence and achieving monetary union as well as establishing an African Central Bank.
Amer headed the meeting of the Association of African Central Banks (AACB) held on 13 March in the Senegalese capital of Dakar as the current president of the AACB.
In his speech, Amer warned against the dangerous consequences of the increasing government debt and the worsening public deficit as well as their impact on financial and monetary stability in African countries, in addition to growing imports and declining exports.
“Central banks must manage their policies in this regard in a way that contributes to bringing back the balance and dealing with the economic imbalances in their countries as well as fighting corruption and illegal financial flows in Africa,” Amer said.
Moreover, Amer praised the support provided by the political leadership headed by President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi who has expressed his confidence in the CBE, its administration and policies, as well as his full support to the programme of economic reforms implemented by Egypt over the past three years.
The meeting was attended by 12 governors of central banks in the AACB, in addition to representatives of central banks, the Economic Affairs Commissioner of the African Union, and the Executive Secretary of AACB.
This is the first time that the CBE heads the meetings of AACB.
The meeting reviewed a report on what has been implemented in the African Monetary Cooperation Programme and the commitment of member companies to the economic convergence standards adopted since 2017.
The report has showed that about 43.5% of the member countries managed in 2018 to meet the four basic convergence standards of inflation, budget deficit, and the CBE’s lending to the government, as well as the ratio of international reserves coverage to imports, against 34.6% of the member countries in 2017.
Governors of the member central banks welcomed the initiatives launched by the CBE to develop the association’s work system, such as the transformation into an e-system, starting from the meetings of the governors of the upcoming assembly in Rwanda in August 2019, and setting a guide prepared by the Egyptian delegation, to calculating economic convergence standards of the association’s monetary cooperation programme.