Françafrique: A colonial pact that “weighs heavily” on the destiny of several countries.

Decades after Independence, these countries continue to deposit via their central banks 50% of their foreign exchange reserves to the French Treasury, under the terms of the colonial pact. France then finances its own deficit with these reserves

Many African voices are indignant at a colonial France Africa pact that “weighs heavily” on the destiny of a large part of the continent for decades.



Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Mali, Niger, Senegal and Togo for the West African Economic and Monetary Union “Uemoa” , in addition to Cameroon, Central African Republic , Chad , Congo, and Gabon for the Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa “Cemac” , are the first concerned, according to the Senegalese geo-economist Siré Sy .

Decades after Independence, these countries continue to deposit via their central banks 50% of their foreign exchange reserves to the French Treasury, under the terms of the colonial pact.

According to Senegalese economist Sanou Mbaye, a former official at the African Development Bank ( ADB) , “France is investing these tens of billions of dollars in treasury bills, which it then uses to guarantee loans. that it raises to finance its own public deficit “.

“The rate was 100% from 1945 to 1975 and then set at 65% from this year and is observed with discipline by the states concerned,” advises the expert and researcher at the international consulting firm in Geostrategy and Goeconomy ( www ), in an interview with Anadolu.

This proportion has nevertheless been brought, he observes, from 65% to 50% for the net foreign assets of the Central Bank of West African States “Bceao”, in accordance with the amendment signed on 20 September 2005, to the transaction account agreement of December 4, 1973.

The same was true for the Bank of Central African States “Beac”, under the new transaction account agreement, signed on January 5, 2007, which gradually lowered the rate to 50%. , rate applied since July 1, 2009.


This monetary cooperation between France and its ex-colonies is “governed by four fundamental principles: guarantees of unlimited convertibility brought by the French Treasury, fixity of parities, free transferability and centralization of foreign exchange reserves” , indicates the official website of the Bank of France.

The recovery of the metropolis treasure by the colonies dates back to the 19th century. “The natives then paid a tax of capitation to the metropolis. A tax per capita but also for personal goods (food products, livestock …) paid individually or collected by local clerks “ , according to the historian and teacher-researcher at the University Cheikh Anta Diop of Dakar, Moustapha Dieng .

“Expropriation” and “slavery” are therefore the watchwords of a French policy that only “curbs the march of its former colonies” often defined as being its own “preserve”, laments Sy.

A situation whose keystone, according to him, a treaty with public clauses and secret clauses that continues to guide the France-Africa relations, serving the interests of the Metropolis, to the detriment of the interest of many countries and African nations, although dating from another age.

But the “servitudes” of the colonial pact, which Paris categorically denies, do not end. Apart from the payment of a portion of their foreign currency holdings, the control of the currency of the countries in question (the CFA Franc) guarantees to the Metropolis the exclusivity of exports of local raw materials, provides it with the local market for imports. and the definition of policies to be adopted by the African countries in question.

Better understood, with the adoption of the European currency euro as monetary anchor CFA Franc without the cooperation mechanisms of the currency area are affected (1 euro is set at 655.95 CFA francs unlike other currencies whose prices are not only floating but also maintained at the lowest level, the Metropolis imposes its rules and conditions regarding convertibility.

Indeed, “It takes 1500 won to South Korea, 15th world power, to have a euro, to Iran (nuclear power) 14,500 rials while it takes much less F CFA (655.95) for to have a euro “. Such a monetary policy devotes a value of the Franc CFA deeply out of step with the reality and the various economic performances of the countries that adopt it as money.

Profits from this monetary policy governed by an African Franc overvalued French companies, holders of the monopoly in key sectors of the economy. Only in such an environment that French companies such as Bouygues, Societe Generale, BNP Paribas, Bolloré can protect their gain and guard against current currency depreciation, “says M.Sy.

It establishes its position, given the ongoing global crisis and increasingly fierce international competition due to China’s soaring economy.

Moreover, the Middle Kingdom has gained ground on the rest of the competitors including France, notes the researcher.

The other cry of alarm is launched by Mamadou Koulibaly, former president of the Ivorian National Assembly, during the time of Laurent Gbagbo. Author of the book “the servitudes of the colonial pact”, this Ivorian nationalist has already put his finger on the evil generated by the secret clauses of the pact. Among which, the total or partial ban of the colonial market to the foreign products, the obligation to export the colonial products exclusively or mainly towards the metropolis; the prohibition by the colony of producing manufactured objects, limited to the production of raw materials and commercial outlet; in exchange for political, military, cultural and often economic aid “.

Just like Siré Sy, Mahamadou Koulibaly, Moustapha Dieng, many other African experts and thinkers are aware of the colossal pain generated by this colonial pact. Except that the means of struggle and resistance, are very modest or ineffective, in the absence of true nationalist leaders, a union that is still lacking all the leaders of the countries concerned and serious and responsible media able to awaken the consciences and to raise the awareness of the peoples who pay the heavy tribute.“Any solitary attempt at resistance will eventually fail. Armed conflicts in the Sahel speak louder. It requires collective resistance from political leaders, African elites and civil society to end this unfair pact concludes the geostrategist promising to continue the fight and work with the rest of the African nationalists.


Original article in French – SOURCE: