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Ghana’s VP says that Africa should embrace cryptocurrencies

The vice president of Ghana has encouraged African countries to embrace cryptocurrencies as it would make it easier to conduct intra-continental trade

Ghana’s Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, is of the view that African governments should embrace cryptocurrencies as they provide a solution to some of the trade problems currently plaguing the continent.

He made this statement while talking at the Fifth Ghana International Trade and Finance Conference. The theme of the conference was “Facilitating Trade and Trade Finance in AfCFTA; The Role of the Financial Services Sector.”

According to the vice president, facilitating trade between African countries demands a single central currency, similar to the Euro in Europe. At the moment, moving goods over African borders is time-consuming and expensive, and that is deterring companies from expanding into other countries in the region.

Dr. Bawumia believes that a digital payments system will rectify this problem and ensure trade between African countries is conducted with ease. “When the scourge of the COVID-19 pandemic hit and forced many economies into partial and total lockdowns, it reinforced the need to pursue digitisation.”

Central banks globally are working on central bank digital currencies (CBCDs), and African countries are not left behind. Earlier this year, Ghana’s central bank, The Bank of Ghana (BoG), revealed that it is already working on its CBDC. The vice president said the development of the CBDC would bring Ghana credibility in the digital space.

Much of the attention in recent months has been focused on Nigeria, Africa’s leading economy. Following the cryptocurrency ban earlier this year, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has focused its efforts on launching its CBDC. The CBN recently announced that it would pilot its CBDC in a project called GIANT by October.

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