What happens when the crypto market intertwines with social media? This answer and more in our weekly round of crypto updates from Africa
Our weekly round of crypto news is online to give you quick access to what hit the headlines in the past few days. Following the forever-changing and upgraded trends of the crypto market in Africa, this week’s top stories from the African continent comprise some highlights of South Africa, the Central African Republic, Ghana, and Nigeria.
We start this week’s news digest with a recent study conducted by Kucoin cryptocurrency exchange showed that 22% of South Africa’s population is currently investing in the crypto market, equivalent to 7.6 million citizens. The report also clarified that most of the respondents involved in the study claimed that social media platforms are the best option for them to get informed about crypto-related issues and possibilities. On top of that, many netizens also find it favorable to have influencers and public figures getting involved in the scenario and propagating their opinions to promote the crypto bubble. The study suggests that the interest in crypto keeps surging among South Africans and that crypto investors are willing to keep strengthening their knowledge to maintain a positive attitude towards cryptocurrencies and the possibilities they may bring into the country’s economy and citizens’ financial lives. The popularity of cryptocurrencies inside the social media world is for sure a good sign that shows South Africa is ready to keep expanding its ties with the novelties brought about by the new crypto era.
The Central African Republic also seems to be invested in initiatives that will keep boosting the popularity of cryptocurrencies since its decision to legalize the use of bitcoins in the country. CAR has been keen on becoming the first country in Africa to turn the widespread use of bitcoins as a financial alternative a reality. Recently, President Touadera hosted a group of seven bitcoin experts in the capital city of Bangui to discuss crypto-related issues, such as new plans of action to upgrade the country’s structure for access to the Internet and develop new mining facilities. The experts were invited to spend a week in the country examining the reality and finding gaps for improvement that can encourage the adoption of Bitcoin as a legal tender. They have also discussed the factors that may be currently hindering this progress and outlined potential solutions. The group assessed some weaknesses, including the lack of access to stable mobile Internet and electricity, affordability of smartphones in the country, and lack of crypto-related education. On the other hand, they have also identified that CAR has strengths for successfully integrating bitcoin into its economy, primarily because of its convenient regulation and extremely low rate of banked citizens that might benefit from crypto-based alternatives.
Ghana’s central bank has just announced the launch of a new mobile wallet for savings and loans companies and banks called GhanaPay, which might represent a step in the right direction to bring the country close to technologies that can pave the way to crypto adoption. The service is officially online from this week onwards and is also accessible for rural and community banks. The Bank of Ghana Governor Dr. Ernest Addison claims that the project is a groundbreaking movement in the process of modernization and digitization of Ghana’s financial system and that the country is fully prepared to keep embracing opportunities to rebuild its infrastructure to strengthen its competitiveness among other African nations that have also been dedicating to creating modern financial services to citizens. The idea is to keep encouraging the banking sector to explore new technologies that can add more efficiency to the ecosystem of Ghana’s overall economy.
Despite the many ups and downs, the rate of cryptocurrency adoption worldwide has grown by almost 900%, a shocking number if we consider the many bans, oscillations, and market volatility that have impacted the growth of this industry in the past couple of years. Cryptocurrencies have been serving as an alternative means of investment and are slowly making their way to digitalize and bring more convenience to a reality that has been based on bureaucratic, traditional banking services. Following the way the world has been responding and embracing the novelties brought about by the continuous growth of the crypto market, the Singaporean crypto payment company Triple A issued a complete report about cryptocurrency adoption across the world based on the number of crypto holders in each country. According to their data, Nigeria, Kenya, South Africa, Egypt, and Ethiopia are the top 5 African economies with the most crypto assets holders inside the African continent. In Nigeria, the number is as high as 13 million citizens, whereas Ethiopia has 1.1 million citizens involved with crypto. The full report can be accessed here.
And apparently, Nigeria is on its way to keep growing this number! According to the crypto trading platform Paxful, Nigeria experienced a recent surge in crypto-based transactions despite the ban proposed by the Central Bank of Nigeria to restrict crypto payments and the worldwide downfall in prices in the crypto market. Compared to the second semester of last year, the volume of money sent and exchanged by Nigerian users using their platform doubled. Moreover, only this past April, the volume of crypto deposits increased by over 50%. Among the most popular countries on the platform, including Kenya, Ghana, China, and the United States, Nigeria remains one of the countries with the highest number of Bitcoin trades and hit a record 33 million Nigerian users negotiating using the service and their crypto assets.
Yigal Weinberger has worked as a lead Data Scientist with some of the biggest security companies in the world, and has been a programmer, hacker and self-proclaimed data geek since he was 11.