Various countries across the world have let it be known that they are considering following El Salvador’s lead in the adoption of Bitcoin as a national currency.
According to Zimbabwe’s finance minister Mthuli Ncube, his country is ready to make concessions on cryptocurrencies, which he believed could reduce the cost of remittances, among other advantages.
Panama, Paraguay and Mexico have already made positive noises in relation to the possible acceptance of bitcoin as a currency. Zimbabwe is the latest addition to this list, and a very welcome addition, given that it is the first country in Africa to be looking into the potential for cryptocurrencies.
Back in 2016 the Zimbabwean government’s stance on cryptocurrencies was very different. Bitcoin was considered to be something that could be used for money laundering and other fraudulent activities.
It does appear astonishing that so many governments and banks would continue to make this very same observation over the years, and up until recently. Even a very basic investigation into how bitcoin works would have uncovered the fact that this is the last place criminals would want to be stashing their money, given the transparency and immutability of the blockchain.
However, in a recent presentation in Dubai, the Zimbabwean finance minister said that a potential solution using cryptocurrency could reduce the cost of remittances in his country, and so it was ready to embrace this possibility.
It appears that Zimbabwe is not ready accept to accept any crypto as a currency, but to legitimise them as an asset class, and potentially use them for payments. The finance minister said the following:
“But our view is that we do not want it to be a currency. We want this to be an investment class. So, through the Victoria Falls Stock Exchange platform, we will try to create crypto based products there, which are ring fenced within the offshore zone.”
“We have taken the first step already and created a sandbox at the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, where the idea and everything else is being tested in a safe, regulated environment, where it will then migrate to this safe Victoria Falls environment.”
Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.