South Africa to tap blockchain to reduce corruption, bring access to markets

South Africa is aiming at integrating blockchain technology to solve some of the challenges facing the country. In a recent blockchain event, the South African Presidential Commission on the Fourth Industrial Revolution recommended the use of blockchain to solve ills such as corruption and lack of market access. With the country being rich in minerals, blockchain can also enhance the industry, providing valuable insight and tracking data in the sector.

South Africa has been among the African countries that have seen the highest adoption of blockchain technology in Africa. More needs to be done, however, commissioner Mpho Dagada believes. Speaking during the Blockchain Africa Conference, he pointed out that blockchain could bring immense value to the country’s mining sector.

He stated, “If the world is moving towards more blockchain systems that are transparent and people want that, we know there is strength in Africa’s minerals and why not plug that in on top of the sector? We might find that we’ll solve the problems we have, like corruption or bringing access to markets. These problems could be solved by us bringing in these solutions and allowing them to plug and play.”

One of the factors that have driven the adoption is the government’s blockchain-friendly approach. Dagada assured South Africans that the government shall continue supporting the technology, so long as it’s not used in crime.

“The outlook from the country is that cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology are a good thing and are more than welcome. What is frowned upon is people misusing them, for example someone evading tax, leaving the country and taking all their Bitcoin with them. But the use, creation and interaction within the confines of the law is more than welcomed by the government.”

South Africa has already produced some of the top names in the blockchain world. They include Lorien Gamaroff, the founder of Bitcoin wallet Centbee which makes it easy and convenient to get into Bitcoin for beginners. The country’s also home to Vinny Lingham, the founder of Civic blockchain identity verification network. Despite having the innovators, it has been unable to hold onto them, Dagada bewailed.

The Blockchain Africa Conference was held at a time when the coronavirus has gripped the world, with African countries joining the long list of affected nations. In South Africa where it was held, thirteen people have already tested positive for the virus. Fears of the virus kept some keynote speakers from attending, including Cardano founder Charles Hoskinson.

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