Business 14 June 2018Dennis Wafula
Crypto in Africa: Continent experiences rapid cryptocurrency uptake
A week into June and cryptocurrency adoption in Africa is booming than ever. The continent is catching the crypto wave; the domestic market growing every day with Uganda being pitched as the next cryptocurrency hotbed.
Crypto exchanges popularity booming in Nigeria
Business is good in Africa and small businesses have a reason to smile. Nigeria, one of Africa’s major cryptocurrency adopting nations, has had significant growth over the last two weeks. In just a week, Bitcoin transactions increased from NGN1.3 billion to NGN1.5 billion (US$1.4 billion).
The recent crypto boom in Nigeria is being attributed to increasing knowledge of blockchain technology and what it has to offer to the locals. Business people in the country have taken the initiative to educate willing participants on the benefits of partaking in the cryptocurrency market, although it hasn’t been an easy task given that majority of people in localities were still skeptical of the technology. However, Bitcoin education centers, conferences, and meetings in Nigeria have already come a long way in making sure more people understand and embrace digital money.
Lack of proper financial regulations in many countries has resulted inmany individuals using cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin for sending money overseas. Current regulations have made it next to impossible to make abroad transactions. The few people willing to tryusing the local fiat end up spending more than a fortunewith market giants like MoneyGram and Western Union, which is why easy access to local cryptocurrency exchanges and payment processors makes cryptocurrenciesmore attractive than the mainstream options for remittances.
Youth leads Africa’s cryptocurrency revolution
Africa is the leading continent on the Paxfulplatform making R500 million transactions per month, South African media outlet Business Report reported, quoting data from the peer-to-peer cryptocurrency marketplace.
Seeking to understand how deep cryptocurrencies have penetrated into African countries, Paxful conducted a research in South Africa, Kenya, Nigeria, and Ghana. According to the research, one particular country where young people in Africa are making a huge difference is South Africa. According to research, 70% of the people in South Africa transacting in Bitcoin are from the younger generation—of which 65% are male and 35% are female. There are several blockchain-related startups in the country with the majority being spearheaded by the youth.
The report indicates that people in the continent involved in blockchain technologies are under 30 years. Some are graduates while others are still in studying towards a tertiary qualification. Young people in Africa do not want to be left behind by the cryptocurrency wave. Some believe cryptocurrency will help change the current economic, political and social state of Africa.
Nigerians have to deal with huge financial limitations. Ray Youssef, CEO @Paxful is giving desperate Americans & Africans, access to Bitcoin via gift cards. He explains how it works: https://t.co/cu6rfnKlq9 @paxful @rayyoussef108 @iTunes #HumansOfBitcoin #Cryptocurrency #P2P
— Bitcoin.com Official (@BitcoinCom) June 5, 2018
The decentralized nature of blockchain could be the solution to the corruption that is prevalent in a majority ofAfrican nations. Young people need a change from the old system that keeps repeating the same mistakes. Because the young people are the majority in Africa, the long awaited change may just be at the brink of happening. With young people leading the revolution, Africa will soon overtake western countries when it comes to cryptocurrency adoption.
Africa continues to climb the cryptocurrency ladder
Since the creation of Bitcoin, a lot has changed especially in Africa.Initially, most countries in Africa did not like the idea of digital money. Some believed that this project would soon collapse, taking many people down with it. As time passed by, the notion began to change and some countries started accepting cryptocurrency and its underlying technology, blockchain.
Blockchain-related innovations have helped Africans solve problems that previously looked hard to tackle. An invention like Bitland in Ghana has helped solve land issues, which is among Africa’s leading cause of disputes for years.
Africa continues to scale higher in cryptocurrency industry and experts expect the continent to continuously scale the cryptocurrency ladder. According to reports, by 2020, more than 725 million people will have mobile subscriptions. With mobile banking already rooted in most African countries, cryptocurrency will soon be at the heart of every home.
Inflation also facilitate cryptocurrency growth in the continent. Some counties like Zimbabwe have had highs of three-digit inflation rate. It was so devastating to the point that the government printed a $100 trillion note (which is about $40). Citizens therefore opted to use cryptocurrency instead of the local fiat currency.
Africa is also home to big virtual exchanges that are slowly rising in popularity. The Luna exchange in South Africa and BitPesa in Kenya are making transactions worth millions of dollars. Luna exchange has over 1.5 million customers while BitPesa made $1.8 million last year.
Despite Africa having a slow, start in cryptocurrency, the future looks brighter for most African countries.
Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (segwit) Chain are Referred to as BTC coins. Bitcoin Satoshi Vision (BSV) is today the only Bitcoin implementation that follows Satoshi Nakamoto’s original whitepaper for Peer to Peer Electronic Cash. Bitcoin BSV is the only major public blockchain that maintains the original vision for Bitcoin as fast, frictionless, electronic cash.
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