Issuing Countries

The West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) was created by a Treaty signed in Dakar on January 10th, 1994, by the Heads of State and Government of the seven West African countries that share a common currency, the CFA Franc.

These countries are: Benin, Burkina, Côte d’Ivoire, Mali, Niger, Senegal and Togo.

The Treaty entered into effect on August 1st, 1994, following its ratification by the member states.

On May 2nd, 1997, Guinea-Bissau became the 8th member state of the Union. WAEMU is represented by a logo symbolizing growth, unity, solidarity and complementarity between Sahelian and coastal states.

Goals of WAEMU

  • To enhance the competitiveness of the member states’ economic and financial activities in the framework of an open and competitive market and a streamlined and harmonized legal environment;
  • To ensure convergence in member states’ economic performances and policies by setting up a multilateral monitoring procedure;
  • To create a common market between member states, based on free movement of persons, goods, services and capital and the right of residence for self-employed persons and wage-earning employees, as well as a common external tariff and trade policy;
  • To coordinate national sector policies by implementing joint actions and potentially through joint policies, particularly in the following areas: human resources, land use planning, agriculture, energy, industry, mining, transportation, infrastructure and telecommunications;
  • To harmonize member state legislation, particularly their tax laws, to the extent necessary to enable the proper functioning of the common market. 


The logo portrays two dynamic, elliptical shapes that intertwine despite their differences, expressing our two guiding ideas: the solidarity and the complementariness of the states and peoples of the Union. This solidarity and complementariness is launched in a continuous upward movement culminating in economic, social and cultural growth for our respective populations. The energy of the forest vines is in harmony with the warmth and vibrancy of the Sahel, creating a sphere of happiness illustrating the nature and goals of WAEMU. Natural resources and equipment (lower, blue hemisphere) and intellectual and spiritual resources (golden hemisphere). And the white circle expresses the peace, serenity and stability in which the WAEMU integration process should be rooted.

WAEMU Achievements

  • Harmonized legislation;
  • Implementation, since January 1st, 1998, of the West African Accounting System (Système Comptable Ouest Africain - SYSCOA);
  • Adoption of a regulation establishing a permanent council of the accounting profession;
  • Adoption of a guideline on the creation of a national order of chartered accountants;
  • Adoption of a guideline on the legal system pertaining to approved management centers;
  • Adoption of a guideline on budget laws;
  • Adoption of a guideline on general regulations on public accounting;
  • Adoption of a guideline on state budgetary nomenclature;
  • Adoption of a guideline on the states’ chart of accounts;
  • Adoption of a guideline on states’ financial operations statements;
  • Adoption of a programme for the harmonization of indirect domestic taxes, and so on.

Institutional functioning

  • All organisms and institutions established under the Treaty of January 10th, 1994, are currently operational;
  • Autonomous specialized institutions such as the Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO) and the West African Development Bank (WADB) already existed in the framework of the West African Monetary Union (WAMU).


WAEMU has developed active cooperation with the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the Permanent Interstate Committee for Drought Control in the Sahel (CILSS), the Central African Economic and Monetary Community (CEMAC), with which it jointly manages the site promoting investments in the Franc Zone, the Organization for Coordination and Cooperation in the Control of Major Endemic Diseases (OCCGE), the Organization for the Harmonization of African Business Law (OHADA), the Organization of African Unity (OAU), the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA).

Cooperation has recently been strengthened with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the Islamic Development Bank (IDB), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.

WAEMU has also reinforced bilateral cooperation with the United States of America by signing an agreement on the development of trade and investments, and with France through the signing of a financing agreement in the framework of the priority solidarity fund (FSP).

  • Area: 3 509 600 km2
  • Population: 112.4 millions
  • Population growth rate: 3,5 %
  • Nominal GDP: 47 875,6 Billion CFA Franc
  • Real GDP (at constant prices): 47 436,1 Billion CFA Franc
  • Real GDP growth rate: 6,6 %
  • Annual inflation rate: - 0,2 %