It was back in August of 2018 when a report was made in regard to Africa and its cryptocurrency regulation. This report made one clear conclusion across most of the countries: They were completely indecisive as to what to do.
Moving Towards Crypto Adoption
Twenty-one countries across Africa had yet to make a public stance on crypto regulation as a whole at the time, with only two countries seemingly showing favorable stances in regards to regulation. Even so, Nigeria and South Africa, two of the largest economies within the continent, have started to gear towards making regulatory plans.
It was back in April when South Africa made its first steps into creating cryptocurrency laws, publishing a framework proposal to try and regulate it. Nigeria, in turn, had already laid out plans to regulate cryptocurrencies through its Securities and Exchange Commission. This stands as a contrast of just two years prior, when Nigeria’s lawmakers had asked the country’s central bank to investigate Bitcoin, believing it to be one big scam.
Kenya Lagging Behind
Even so, progress is uneven, even now. Kenya, a country typically at the forefront of financial technology solution adoption within the continent, has yet to make any concrete plans for regulation. The last thing occurring there on that front, is the Kenyan central bank warning local banks against dealings with cryptocurrencies.
Aly-Khan Satchu stands as a financial analyst and investor based in Nairobi, and stated that his country seems to be in a state of limbo regarding this. In Satchu’s opinion, the overarching situation is the spillover effect from the governor of the Central Bank taking such a hard stance against crypto at large.
Africa’s People Keen For Crypto
This legislative reluctance doesn’t spread out to the people, however. Crypto startups and local users across the continent at large aren’t bothering to wait for the regulators to play catch-up. Crypto trading within Africa has seen significant growth, and is partly being powered by home-grown exchanges that operate within this regulatory grey area. Chainalysis, a blockchain market intelligence firm, showed that the retail Bitcoin transfers in Africa, which is transfers less than $10,000 in value, reached a total volume of $316 million in Africa, back in June this year.
Luno stands as one of the oldest crypto exchanges within Africa at large, and made note that the trading volumes for just South Africa and Nigeria have gone past the $549 million mark in August. This stands as a 49% increase since the year’s start. BuyCoins stands as a Lagos-based crypto exchange, has been in operation for three years. According to BuyCoins, it had already processed $110 million in transactions for this year alone, having only achieved $28 million for 2019’s entirety.