What is ECOWAS?

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What is ECOWAS? Blog Image


Member countries of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) will meet to discuss their next steps, after Niger’s military junta defied their deadline to reinstate the country’s ousted president.



  • It is the West African nation’s regional group which was established in 1975 through the Lagos Treaty.
  • Mandate: Promoting economic integration among its members.
  • Aim: To have a single common currency and create a single, large trading bloc in areas of industry, transport, telecommunications, energy, financial issues, and social and cultural matters. 
  • Member countries: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Cote d’ Ivoire, The Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Senegal and Togo. Around 400 million people live in this regiono
  • These countries have both cultural and geopolitical ties and shared common economic interest.
  • Headquarters: Abuja, Nigeria.
  • Beyond the goals of economic cooperation, ECOWAS has attempted to quell military conflicts in the region. 
  • ECOWAS also operated a regional peacekeeping operation known as ECOMOG, led by Nigeria in the 1990s and early 2000s.


Q1) What is Economic union?

An economic union refers to a type of trade agreement where member countries eliminate barriers to trade among themselves and often adopt common economic policies. This typically involves removing tariffs, quotas, and other restrictions on goods and services, as well as coordinating on issues such as currency and monetary policies

Source: What is ECOWAS, the West African bloc that could intervene in Niger’s coup?