At a recent conference held in Dakar, Senegal, a representative of the Central Bank of West African States (also known by the French acronym BCEAO) asked West African banks to decrease the interest rates they charge borrowers. The governor of BCEAO, Tiemoko Meyliet Kone, reportedly stated that banks should, “strengthen transparency rules when it comes to accessing customer information and apply a fair price on banking services.” Members of the Association Professionnelle des Banques et Etablissement Financiers (APBEF), a trade association of 21 financial institutions in the region, were advised by BCEAO to reevaluate their financial risk management practices and expand their products, services and customer base. The representatives of APBEF also urged BCEAO to introduce control instruments for borrower profiling, clearly establish rights for creditors, and increase tax fairness in West Africa.
By Sarah Benali, Research Associate
About The Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO in French)
The Central Bank of West African States (also known by the French acronym BCEAO) is the regional central bank for eight member states which together form the West African Monetary Union. These states are Benin, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, Niger, Senegal and Togo. BCEAO is a public international institution headquartered in Dakar, Senegal.
Sources and Additional Resources
Making Finance Work for Africa Press Release: “The BCEAO urges West African banks to lower interest rates,” December 2012, http://www.mfw4a.org/news/news-details/7/the-bceao-urges-west-african-%20banks-to-lower-interest-rates.html”>http://www.mfw4a.org/news/news-details/7/the-bceao-urges-west-african- banks-to-lower-interest-rates.html
BCEAO Press Release: “Recontre entre le gouverneur de la BCEAO et les presidents des association professionnelles des banques et etablissement financiers de l’UEMOA tenue a Dakar, le 30 novembre 2012,” November 2012, http://www.bceao.int/COMMUNIQUE-DE-PRESSE-RELATIF-A-LA.html
MicroCapital.org story: “MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: International Finance Corporation (IFC), West African Monetary Union (UEMOA) to Establish Credit Bureau to Support Small-scale Businesses,” May 4, 2012,
MicroCapital.org story: “MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: MFTransparency to Launch Transparent Pricing Initiative in Eight West African Countries, in Partnership with Luxembourg Development Cooperation,” July 6, 2010, http://www.microcapital.org/microcapital-brief-mftransparency-to-launch-transparent-pricing-initiative-in-eight-west-african-countries-in-partnership-with-luxembourg-development-cooperation/
MicroCapital.org story: “MICROCAPITAL BRIEF: Legisltions Requires MFIs Under Central Bank of West African States to Join Trade Associations,” November 25, 2009,
MicroCapital Universe Profile: Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO)
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