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Ecowas summit: 6 steps the leaders can take to restore stability and growth in west Africa

Ecowas summit: 6 steps the leaders can take to restore stability and growth in west Africa

THIS year’s summit of the Economic Community of West African States (Ecowas) takes place against a challenging environment for the regional bloc. Recent developments in the region have included coups, insecurity and economic instability. Climate change also poses challenges. Six successful and two attempted coups in the region since 2020 were followed by the withdrawal of Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger from the bloc. All three were founding members of Ecowas (in 1975) and are key countries in the Sahel. The 15-member economic bloc has developed the most integrated economic community in Africa through a free trade area, free movement…
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West Africa’s ECOWAS bloc needs up to $2.6 billion a year for security force

West Africa’s ECOWAS bloc needs up to $2.6 billion a year for security force

WEST Africa's regional bloc needs up to $2.6 billion annually to establish a 5,000-strong security force to combat terrorism, according to one of the options being considered by defence officials at a meeting. Defence and finance ministers from the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) were meeting in the Nigerian capital Abuja to decide on the size of a potential force and how much would be required to fund it. Coup-hit West Africa is grappling with a raft of political crises that have hurt regional cooperation. In January, military-ruled Niger, Burkina Faso and Mali decided to exit the 15-member union. Since…
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West Africa trade will take a hit as Mali, Niger and Burkina Faso leave Ecowas

West Africa trade will take a hit as Mali, Niger and Burkina Faso leave Ecowas

THE membership of the Economic Community of West African States (Ecowas) has been whittled down from 15 to 12 following the unilateral withdrawal of Niger, Mali and Burkina Faso in February. Founded in 1975, Ecowas is one of eight regional economic communities recognised by the African Union to foster regional integration on the continent. Its main objective is to create a single, large trading bloc through economic cooperation. OLIVIER WALTHER, Assistant Professor in Geography, University of Florida Since 1975, Ecowas and its sister organisation the West African Economic and Monetary Union (known by its French acronym, Uemoa) have implemented numerous…
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