According to business leaders in the sector, cryptocurrencies are not simply a speculative endeavor in Africa but also a way to solve urgent real-world problems. Blockchain technology is providing a revolutionary force in Africa, helping in the fight against hyperinflation and corruption. While the West frequently regards cryptocurrency as a “casino”, in Africa it is proving to be a game changer.
Chris Maurice, founder, and CEO of Yellow Card, highlights the cryptocurrency’s rapid growth in Africa. He believes it can bring financial freedom. Yellow Card are the largest exchange on the continent. Cryptocurrency empowers Africans to transact freely, bypassing restrictions of traditional banking and existing financial systems. It offers a means to overcome drawbacks, providing greater financial freedom and accessibility in Africa.
Cryptocurrencies, according to Maurice, provide workable solutions to problems with banks, currency, and inflation. International payments, remittances to friends and family, and inflation protection are the most typical use cases in Africa.
The importance of blockchain-based payments as a tool for safeguarding human rights has been highlighted by Kevin Imani, the creator, and CEO of Sankore 2.0, a Near Protocol affiliate. In countries grappling with hyperinflation and corruption, cryptocurrencies serve as a lifeline, fostering financial inclusion. They empower individuals, granting greater control over their money and circumventing the limitations of traditional systems.
According to Statistica, Sub-Sahara Africa will face the biggest yearly change since the 2008 recession in 2022, with a projected inflation rate of 14.5%. Peer-to-peer cryptocurrency transactions are therefore appealing to many Africans due to the ability of cryptocurrencies to combat corrupt national currencies.
Africans, who have long endured unaccountable and corrupt governance, have come to trust blockchain technology because of its transparency. According to Okoye Kevin Chibuoyim, founder and CEO of GIDA, cryptocurrency presents Africa with an opportunity for something wonderful. He believes it can bring more visibility and empowerment to the continent.
In a recent development, Block, a Jack Dorsey-led digital payments company with offices in the US, teamed up with Yellow Card in April to enable cross-border payments across Africa.
In 2022, the region experienced an 11-fold increase in venture capital funding due to the Bitcoin boom. Nigeria, with 47% of its population regularly using cryptocurrencies, has emerged as a cryptocurrency leader.
Investopedia states that some countries, such as Cameroon, Central African Republic, Gabon, Guyana, Lesotho, Libya, and Zimbabwe, consider cryptocurrencies illegal. However, countries like Botswana have established clear legal and regulatory frameworks for cryptocurrencies.
Cryptocurrencies in Africa provide solutions to economic problems and enable the continent to embrace global financial inclusion and transparency. They also empower citizens, fostering a sense of empowerment and participation in the global financial landscape.