The foreign exchange reserves of the Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO) fell from 13,878.6 billion FCFA at the end of July 2021 to 13,515.2 billion a year later. This represents a drop of 2.62% over one year.
At this level, the foreign exchange reserves of the 8 WAEMU countries cover 5.2 months of imports of goods and services. Their decline, explains the BCEAO, is linked to the sharp drop in net foreign assets following a massive outflow of currencies in respect of outward transfers.
“After a decrease in foreign exchange reserves in 2016 due to the decline in the mobilization of external resources by States, the decline in private capital inflows and the increase in external liabilities of banks, foreign exchange reserves increased by 95 4% in 5 years to reach 14,039.9 billion FCFA in 2021,” says the Uemoa information note published by the Umoa-Titres agency.
A situation attributed in part to the repatriation by Côte d’Ivoire and Senegal of the proceeds of Eurobonds issued on the international markets in 2017 and 2018, as well as to the mobilization of resources from the States and BOAD in 2020 .