Cryptocurrency in Africa has risen over 1,200% since last year, proving how quickly cryptocurrency is surging throughout the continent.

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Implementing cryptocurrency throughout Africa | Credit: Zerocap

Africa continues to provide fertile ground for digital transactions, even though in some countries such as Nigeria, banks have banned cryptocurrency providers from trading. Nevertheless, this hasn’t stopped the region, or Africa itself from exchanging digital currency as many people, especially the youth, look for new ways to make money during the pandemic.

Africa’s digital economy has grown over 1,200% in value since the pandemic in 2020. Figures released by Chainanalysis said Africa, through its transfers of digital currency, has now risen to the third-fastest growing cryptocurrency economy in the world.

The boom in its market has resulted due to an upsurge in demand for the trading and buying of cryptocurrency as people now actively look for faster ran, more cost-effective ways of making money or starting businesses at home and abroad. Many now use cryptocurrency platforms to send money to family members who live in different countries.

Cross-region transfers of cryptocurrency currently account for 96% of Africa’s cryptocurrency market. However, they only form 78% of all other areas combined. Users in Africa, have been choosing to make payments through crypto due to the high charges associated with sending money abroad.

Additionally, Chainanalysis’s report revealed that the reason why cryptocurrency has been adopted so highly throughout the continent is also connected to uncertainty with local currencies such as Nigerian naira. Although Nigerian banks have banned the trading of cryptocurrency many have seen cryptocurrency as a means of escaping the unstable naira currency and the high cost of living, as unemployment continues to grow in one of Africa’s most populated nations.

“Nigerians are investing in cryptocurrency as a means [to] store value and to carry their funds outside the shores of the country,” reports Ayodeji Ebo, CEO of retail investment at Lagos-based firm Chapel Hill Denham to NOTV Profit.

“eNaira will be for transactionary purposes.”

Consequently, due to the growth in digital payments and cryptocurrency such as Bitcoin, Nigeria as well as Ghana respectively are currently in a race to develop each country’s own digital currency.

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Ghana plans to start its own digital currency called E-Cedi. | Credit: AfroTech.

The Bank of Ghana has collaborated with German company Giesecke+Devrient (G+D) to pilot e-Cedi. The launch is part of a wider initiative to digitalise the country and its government, making it more adaptable to technology and upcoming trends.

On the other hand, Nigeria has chosen worldwide financial technology firm, Bitt Inc. for its CBDC scheme (digitalised money which is backed and supplied by a central bank) titled “Project Giant” after over three years of quality research and planning, looking into the implementation of digital currency.

“The CBN will rely on the company’s tested and proven digital currency experience, which is already in circulation in several eastern Caribbean countries,” the Central Bank of Nigeria said to NOTV Profiit.

October 1 onwards, African consumers can download the eNaira app and invest into their digital wallets using their current bank accounts, as stated by CBN governor Godwin Emefiele.

Amid heightened fears, worries too are increasing about the longevity of cryptocurrency in African nations. Nigeria’s central bank is now more concerned about the effect of cryptocurrency on inflation and Nigeria’s stability. The nature of many online markets can be volatile as the market changes everyday.

Invest with caution, consider the full facts before placing too much on the line.

Please listen below to hear a detailed report about the ups and down of cryptocurrency.

This audio has been taken from un.org’s africa renewal section. To see full article written by Eugene Yiga, click this link:

https://www.un.org/africarenewal/magazine/june-2021/crypto-currency-adoption-africa-ups-and-downs

Even greater than these fears, is the need to be proud of Africa for joining the digital revolution. Nothing done in this life is without risks. Every day, African countries take the initiative to utilize technology and make life that much more simpler and integrated. It is a joy to be able to cheer on from the diaspora through connections provided by the internet, however, why not take it a step further and be a part of the celebrations?

The Road to Ghana in December is wide, and we invite you to join us as we return to share in Africa’s prosperity over the last year with zeal and elation.