There may soon be a common virtual currency used by members of the Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa (CEMAC), if plans by the Bank of Central African States (BEAC) materialize. The chairman of the BEAC board of directors, Hervé Ndoba, who is also CAR’s finance and budget minister, called on the CEMAC central bank to “to work towards the creation of a central bank digital currency (CBDC)” for its members.
These are the following States: Cameroon, Chad, Central Africa Democratic Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Congo and Gabon. Ndoba recently made the call in Cameroon’s economic capital, Douala, after an extraordinary session of the regional monetary authority. He said a CBDC will boost financial inclusion and modernize payment infrastructure within CEMAC.
Once the virtual currency goes live, the BEAC will become the first regional monetary authority to issue a digital currency. Several central banks in Africa are still considering the introduction of digital currencies, like Nigeria which launched the e-Naira last year. CBDC-related plans have been mooted, especially after BEAC member Central African Republic recently launched a cryptocurrency project in April 2022, which the central bank initially and strongly opposed.