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France's African colonies were finally given independence around 70 years ago but one throwback to that era still remains – control by Paris of its former colonies' currency. The 'CFA franc', guaranteed by the French Treasury, is the legal tender in 14 west and central African nations. As Fanny Pigeaud reports in the first of two articles, many African economists are critical of the 'Franc Zone', which many feel holds back economic development.
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