The Central African Republic adopts Bitcoin as its official currency

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A statement signed by President Faustin-Archange Touadera’s chief of staff, obtained by Reuters, says in part that “the president supports this bill because it will improve the conditions of Central African citizens”.

The statement went further by revealing that the adoption of Bitcoin in the Central African Republic would open up new opportunities for the country.

Interestingly, the move drew criticism from two of the country’s former prime ministers. In a letter they co-wrote and published last week, the former prime ministers expressed concern over the developing situation. They also described the decision to adopt Bitcoin without first consulting the Bank of Central African States (BEAC) as a “serious breach”.

It should be noted that the Central African Republic is among the six African states that currently use the CFA franc which is governed by the BEAC.

A regional central bank spokesman acknowledged that “BEAC learned along with the public about the enactment of a new cryptocurrency law in the Central African Republic.” They noted, however, that the BEAC does not yet have an official response to the development.

The adoption came as a surprise at a time when many African central banks have expressed skepticism and reluctance to embrace cryptocurrency. Recall that Nigeria in 2021 banned its local lenders from facilitating crypto transactions. Earlier this year, a number of banks were sanctioned for violating the ban.

Meanwhile, others like South Africa and Kenya are still exploring the potentials and best possible ways to regulate cryptocurrencies.

Meanwhile, the Central African Republic is the second country in the world, after El Salvador, to adopt a cryptocurrency as its official currency.

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