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Evaluating participation in an African monetary union : a statistical analysis of the CFA zone (Inglês)

Thirteen African nations are engaged in two monetary unions with France often referred to as the CFA Zone. Despite the acknowledged benefits of Zone membership such as convertible currency, pooled resources and greater monetary and fiscal "discipline," several observers have questioned whether particular aspects of the Zone have impeded its members' growth. This paper addresses that question by testing whether CFA Zone countries had different GNP growth rates from selected "comparator" countries during 1960-82. Results show that CFA countries grew significantly faster than comparator Sub-Saharan African countries but usually slower, and often significantly so, than the whole sample of developing countries. When the comparison is made by subperiod (before and after 1973), CFA countries' performance vis-a-vis that of their comparators improved during the 1973-82 period, casting further doubt on the claim that the monetary union is not functioning adequately.

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