Nigeria Passes Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Law

A little over a year after its launch in October 2021, Nigeria’s eNaira has only managed to achieve an adoption rate of 0.5%. The legislation that is expected to be approved arises as a consequence of this fact. According to recent reports, the Nigerian government will soon pass legislation that will officially recognize the use of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as a method for the country to align its practices with those of the rest of the world.

Following an interview with the Chairman of the House Capital Markets Committee, Babangida Ibrahim, the news broke in Nigeria-based Punch Newspapers on December 18.

According to the report, if the Securities and Investments (Amendment) Bill 2007 is passed and becomes law, it will allow the local Securities and Exchange Commission to recognize cryptocurrencies and other digital funds as investment capital. Currently, the SEC does not recognize these types of funds as investment capital.

The report comes nearly 24 months after Nigeria banned cryptocurrency activity in February 2021. At the time, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) ordered Nigerian cryptocurrency exchanges and service providers to cease activity and ordered banks to close the accounts of any person or entity found. to engage in commercial activities. This report comes almost 24 months after those events.

If the bill passes, the Nigerian Securities and Investments Act 2007 would be revised to reflect the changes.

In addition to giving official recognition to Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, the legislation would also detail the regulatory roles of the Central Bank of Nigeria and the Nigerian Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in relation to issues with digital currencies, according to the article.

The regulation also comes at a time when Nigerians have shown little to no interest in the digital currency issued by Nigeria’s central bank, eNaira. eNaira only achieved an adoption rate of 0.5% in October, 12 months after it was first introduced to the public.

Adoption continued to expand after the ban was implemented in February 2021, indicating that attempts made by the Nigerian government early on to clamp down on cryptocurrency activities were likely also unsuccessful.

Between the months of January and August of the previous year, the volume of Bitcoin trade in Nigeria was second only to that of the United States. During the same time period, Nigerians were more likely to Google Bitcoin than any other country.

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