Nigeria drafts blockchain and digital currency adoption roadmap

The Nigerian government has launched a roadmap on promoting the adoption of blockchain technology and digital currencies. The government is looking to digitize the country’s economy and views blockchain as the technology on which to build its future.

Titled ‘National Blockchain Adoption Strategy,’ the roadmap breaks down how blockchain has changed the trust paradigm, its adoption in Nigeria so far, how the government intends on applying it and how it integrates with other emerging technologies.

The framework was drafted by Nigeria’s Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy and made publicly available by local outlet Technology Times. It states that President Muhammad Buhari’s government is keen on digitizing the Nigerian economy and gradually reducing the over-reliance on oil and gas.

“The primary objective of the Nigerian Blockchain Adoption Strategy is to identify and utilize the opportunities provided by Blockchain technologies to strengthen the country’s security on cyberspace and stimulate the growth of the economy.”

The roadmap focused on key areas including regulating the technology, innovation, skills and capacity building, investment and international competitiveness.

On regulations, the Ministry admitted that Nigeria currently has no legal framework for blockchain. Additionally, the Central Bank of Nigeria has cautioned the public against trading digital currencies. This is one of the key areas the government needs to solve if the West African country is to adopt blockchain, according to the government draft.

“A legal/regulatory framework issued by the government has become a paramount factor that would guide and determine the successful adoption of blockchain technology in both the public and private sector.”

Nigeria’s blockchain adoption will depend on six key initiatives, the draft outlined. They are the establishment of the Nigeria Blockchain Consortium, the strengthening of the regulatory framework, the provision of the national digital identity and creation of blockchain business incentive programmes. The government must also promote blockchain literacy and establish a national blockchain sandbox.

Nigeria stands to benefit greatly if it adopts blockchain technology, especially in the public sector. The country has one of the most corrupt governments in Africa and blockchain could greatly enhance transparency and accountability. Nigeria also has a huge unbanked population of over 60 million people. This group could greatly benefit from the use of Bitcoin SV with its real-time transactions and very low transaction fees.

South African Bitcoin SV wallet Centbee has already tapped into the vast Nigeria market with its Minit Money remittance service. The service allows users to send money between the two African economic giants in minutes and at very low fees, a first in the market.

See also: Centbee at CoinGeek Live 2020.

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