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The Franco-Malagasy negotiations opened with a view to laying the foundations for new relations of co-operation between Madagascar and France, lead in particular to an undesirable but envisaged result. “Forced to safeguard its national sovereignty at all costs, Madagascar leaves the Franc area and is resolutely prepared to face all the consequences that could result from such a gesture. “
This “courageous” decision, Major General Gabriel Ramanantsoa,
Government on May 21, 1973 in Betafo. A crowd
Numerous came to listen to it, brandishing banners reading “Diego-Suarez and Ivato to the Malagasy”, “Evacuation of foreign forces”. The General then exclaimed:
” Trust us. We will not sell the Fatherland. We would rather stand and remain poor rather than kneel to be rich. “
A few months earlier, on 27 February, an agreement was reached in Paris on the principles of a new form of monetary cooperation between France and Madagascar. The agreement is based on the recognition by the Malagasy Republic of its full monetary sovereignty, both internally and internationally. In addition, the French Treasury agrees to give a limited and conditional guarantee to the image of the drawings on the tranches of credit with the International Monetary Fund.
Moreover, the principle of the freedom of transfers between the two countries is allowed, since each State has the possibility of restricting this freedom if the circumstances
require. However, transfer facilities are requested for the benefit of French nationals even during a period of restriction.
During the second phase of the negotiations in Antananarivo, the proposals of the French delegation are not considered “acceptable”. Both parties therefore agree that monetary provisions, including the general treaty, are not indispensable. “Which consecrates the full and total independence of the Malagasy currency. “
According to Minister Albert-Marie Ramaroson (Economy and Finance), the regime under the Paris agreement and the actual regime differ. The Paris agreement enshrined the internal and external independence of our currency, of course, but it paved the way for a new and original form of monetary cooperation by giving our country, in a way, the status of a state no longer a “member” But “associated with the Frank zone. In the actual regime, “Madagascar will no longer be part of the Franc Zone”.
Albert-Marie Ramaroson also evokes the convertibility of the Malagasy franc. “Since 1960, our currency is guaranteed by the French Treasury. That is to say, it makes available to Madagascar the sums necessary to ensure the payment of our external commitments. In thirteen years, this guarantee did not have to play once, because the external assets Malagasy have always been sufficient. “
Thus, the possibility of honoring external liabilities is essentially linked to the level of external assets, ie reserves in foreign currency. “The defense of the external value of money can thus lead, among other things, to restrictions on transfers, as is currently the case in our country. “
Malagasy reserves in foreign currencies are then at a high level “rarely reached in thirteen years”.