Accra Conference on Monetary and Financial Integration 8-9 June 2010


Accra Conference on Monetary and Financial Integration 8-9 June 2010

An International Conference on Monetary and Financial Integration was jointly organized at Alisa Hotel, in Accra June 8-9, 2010, by the West African Monetary Institute (WAMI) and the Center for Research on Political Economy (CREPOL) ...


Introduction

An International Conference on Monetary and Financial Integration was jointly organized at Alisa Hotel, in Accra June 8-9, 2010, by the West African Monetary Institute (WAMI) and the Center for Research on Political Economy (CREPOL).  This activity is part of the program of collaboration planned by the two institutions under the umbrella of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that they signed on November 2, 2009.  In accordance with the MOU the two institutions agree to conduct joint research, organize professional meetings and stimulate the policy debate between policymakers and researchers in the West Africa Sub-region.  The recently held conference was jointly designed, planned, and implemented by both centers in collaboration with IDRC’s Senior Program Specialist, Dr. Elias Ayuk who participated in all phases of the process.

1. Objectives of the Conference


The Conference had three main objectives:

- Create a forum at which policymakers and researchers would meet and discuss issues of relevance to regional integration in West Africa with respect to money and finance, thereby furthering the development agenda of the sub-region,

- Expand the scientific basis of the debate on development in West Africa by presenting state-of-the-art economic research that has been conducted by researchers based in Africa and from the African Diaspora,

- Expand and perpetuate the body of knowledge on development in West Africa through publication of the manuscripts in book form by a commercial publisher.


Without being a specific objective, strengthening of the African research community was also an expected outcome of the conference.


2. Selection of manuscripts and role of authors


Following a Call for papers that was widely circulated in Africa, abroad and on the Internet in January 2010, the Organizing Committee (OC) that comprised WAMI, IDRC and CREPOL received and selected the papers that were to be presented at the conference.  In some cases, corrections were requested before final selection.  Special attention was paid to encouragement of African Ph.D. students in order to facilitate their integration into the scientific community.  As a result, two out of the 14 papers that were accepted were authored by African students.  Authors whose manuscripts were selected were also asked to serve as discussants for other papers and to prepare written comments that would be presented at the conference.  Every paper was presented in Powerpoint format and the files of the manuscripts and of the Powerpoint presentations were made available to all participants.

It is noteworthy that the manuscripts that were selected were of the highest quality given the large number of submissions emanating from the Diaspora and from senior scholars who are also members of the US-based African Finance and Economic Association (AFEA).  Indeed, out of the 14 manuscripts 8 were authored by members of AFEA, (two based in Africa) almost all with the rank of full professors or directors of research institutions. See annexed conference agenda for list of manuscripts and of authors.

3. Participation


A total of 47 participants attended the conference. Were also present Prof. Takyuwaa Manuh, Regional Advisor of IDRC and Directors of Research of the Central Banks of Ghana, Nigeria, Sierra Leone and the Gambia.  The Sub-regional economic research institutions were also represented.  They consisted of the West African Monetary Institute (WAMI), represented by

its Director General, the West African Institute for Financial and Economic Management (WAIFEM) represented by its Director General and the West African Monetary Agency (WAMI) represented by a senior official.  Also participated senior representatives of the African Development Bank (AfDB), ECOWAS and UEMOA.  Finally a large number of economists and other staff of WAMI, the Bank of Ghana and CREPOL participated in the conference.   Overall, most key sub-regional economic research and policy institutions actively participated in the conference with representation at the director-level or by the heads of the institutions themselves.

4. Assessment of the outcome


The conference was officially opened by the Advisor of the Governor of the Bank of Ghana who represented the Governor. Then Prof Manuh gave a presentation of IDRC’s research priorities in West Africa. A total of 14 plenary sessions were organized at each of which a manuscript was presented by its author, commented on by a discussant before a discussion by the floor.  The senior levels of the researchers and of the policymakers gave the opportunity for high level discussions and a fruitful dialogue between research and policy. This was the first West Africa wide meeting at which such high-level interaction occurred.

The breadth of the topics covered included Optimality of West Africa as a currency zone, Banking, Monetary policy, Economic integration, Inflation, Global financial crisis, Performance of UEMOA, Macroeconomic policy, Stock markets, Trade, and Human capital. The high quality of the manuscripts and the presentations were two of the main benefits of the conference.  The vibrant debates added to the richness of the event and gave authors an opportunity to improve upon their papers before their final submission for publication.

The conference gave policymakers the opportunity to show their readiness to dialogue with researchers and to speak a common language, a fact researchers took note of by making their presentations in plain language

and constructively answering all the questions and comments made from the floor.  Policymakers reiterated their interest in participating in future editions of the same conference or similar events.


The conference was successful in securing the participation of several African scholars based overseas who contributed their advanced level of expertise through the quality of their manuscripts and their participation in the debates.  The networking between Africa-based and Foreign-based professionals that resulted from the conference is another achievement.  AFEA also benefitted from the conference by enrolling new members who were previously not aware of its existence.

Finally, WAIFEM and WAMA having been invited to the conference and witnessed its success offered to participate in next year’s edition as co-organizers jointly with WAMI and CREPOL.

5. Planned follow-up activities


The main follow-up activity is to publish all the manuscripts that were presented at the conference as a book.  To that end authors have been requested to make the corrections that were suggested during the discussions and send the revised drafts to the Conference Organizers no later than July 10, 2010.  Then the manuscripts will be submitted to a commercial publisher.

The second follow-up activity will be to organize the conference in March 2011, as a joint activity of WAMI, WAMA, WAIFEM and CREPOL. It is hoped that sub-regional organizations will be represented at an even higher level.

West African Monetary Institute (WAMI) and the Centre for Research on Political Economy (CREPOL) and with the support of the International Development Research Centre (IDRC)



International Conference

On

“Financial and Monetary Integration in West Africa”

Alisa Hotel, Accra, Ghana

June 8-9, 2010

AGENDA

Day One: Tuesday, June 8, 2010

8:00a.m – 9:00 am    Arrival of Guests

9:00a.m – 10:00 am    Opening Session:


Chair      Mr. Kwesi Amissah-Arthur, Governor of the Bank of

Ghana (BOG)


Welcome Remarks    Temitope W. Oshikoya, Director General, WAMI


Overview of Conference   Diery Seck, Director, CREPOL


Remarks     IDRC


10:00am – 10:30am    Tea/ Coffee Break


10:30 am – 11:15 am    1st Plenary Session on:

Fiscal Operations in the West African Sub-Regional:

Implications for Regional Economic integration


Chair:      Dr. E. Addison (Director, Bank of Ghana)


Presenters:     Akpan Ekpo & Udoma Afangideh


Discussant:     Edward E. Ghartey

Floor Discussion

11:15am – 12:00hrs    2nd Plenary Session on:

Les Effets Non Lineaires de l’Inflation sur la

Croissance dans l’UEMOA


Chair:      Dr. E. Addison


Presenters:     Adama Combey & Kako Nubukpo

Discussant:     Ouedraogo, Seydou

Floor Discussion


12:00hrs – 12:45hrs    3rd Plenary Session on:

Does Regional Euro-currency Integration promote human

Development in Sub-Saharan Africa?


Chair      Dr. E. Addison


Presenter:     Juliet Elu


Discussant:     Oladele Omosegbon


Floor Discussion


12:45hrs – 1:30hrs    4th Plenary Session on:

Stock Market Volatility and Convergence in the WAMZ:

Implications for Monetary Union


Chair:      Mr. M. Mansaray (Ag. Director, Bank of Sierra Leone)


Presenter:     Abraham Williams


Discussant:     Kwabena Gyimah- Brempong


Floor Discussion


1:30hrs – 2:15hrs    Lunch Break


2:15 hrs – 3:00 hrs    5th Plenary Session on:

Inflation and Growth: An Estimate of the Optimal

(Threshold) levels of Inflation in the WAMZ


Chair :      Mr. M. Mansaray


Presenter:     Abu Bakar Tarawalie


Discussant:     Akpan Ekpo/ Udoma Afangideh

Floor Discussion


3:00hrs – 3:45hrs    6th Plenary Session on:

Patterns of Economic Shocks in the WAMZ

Member Countries


Chair:      Mr. F. Syllah (Director of Research, Central Bank of

Guinea)


Presenter:     Douglason Omotor


Discussant:     Abraham Terfa Williams


Floor Discussion

3:45hrs – 4:15hrs    Tea Break


4:15hrs – 5:00hrs    7th Plenary Session on:

Towards a West African Monetary Zone: Beyond stylized

Convergence criteria


Chair:      Mr. F. Syllah


Presenter:     Oladele Omosegbon


Discussant:     Juliet U. Elu


Floor Discussion


5:00hrs     End of day 1.



Day Two: Wednesday, June 9, 2010


9:15 am – 10:00 am    8th Plenary Session on:

West African Monetary Zone as an Optimum Currency

Area

Chair :      Mr. C.N.O Mordi (Director of Research, Central Bank of

Nigeria)


Presenters:     Edward E. Ghartey


Discussant:     Elias Ayuk

Floor Discussion



10:00hrs- 10:45hrs    9th Plenary Session on:

Concentration bancaire et efficacite de la politique

monetaire dans l’UEMOA: Implications pour la zone

monetaire d’afrique de l’ouest


Chair:      Mr. C.N.O Mordi


Presenters:     Ouedraogo, Seydou


Discussant:     Diery Seck

Floor Discussion


10:45am – 11:15am    Tea/ Coffee Break


11:15am – 12:00hrs    10th  Plenary Session on:

The impact of the global financial crisis on West African

States


Chair      Mr. I. Jarju (Director of Research, bank of Gambia)


Presenter:     Diery Seck


Discussant:     Abu Bakarr Tarawalie


Floor Discussion


12:00hrs – 12:45hrs    11th Plenary Session on:

Education, Regional Integration, and Development in

West Africa


Chair:      Mr. I. Jarju


Presenter:     Kwabena Gyimah- Brempong


Discussant:     Prof Diery Seck


Floor Discussion



12:45hrs – 1:30hrs    12th Plenary Session on:

L’UEMOA a 15 ans: Bilan et strategies futures


Chair:      Mr. I. Jarju


Presenter:     Prof Diery Seck


Discussant:     Adama Combey/ Kako Nubukpo


Floor Discussion


1:30hrs – 2:30hrs    Lunch Break


2:30hrs – 3:15hrs    13th Plenary Session on:



Chair:      Mr. Richard A. Dorley (Director of Research, Central Bank

of Liberia)


Presenter:     William Amponsah


Discussant:     Douglason G. Omotor


Floor Discussion


3:15hrs – 4:00hrs    14th Plenary Session on:



Chair:      Mr. Richard A. Dorley


Presenter:     Elias Ayuk


Discussant:     William Amponsah


Floor Discussion

4:00hrs – 4:15hrs    Tea/ Coffee Break


4:30hrs-5:00hrs     End of day 2.


19:00hrs:      Closing Dinner- Alisa Hotel

West African Monetary Institute (WAMI) and the Centre for Research on Political Economy (CREPOL) and with the support of the International Development Research Centre (IDRC)


International Conference

On

“Financial and Monetary Integration in West Africa”

Alisa Hotel, Accra, Ghana

June 8-9, 2010


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