The news about the Central Bank of Nigeria’s ban on cryptocurrency transactions has generated a lot of buzz and worry amongst Nigerians online. But while the very notion of banning a popular and heavily rewarding financial channel raises cause for concern, most Nigerians are still unclear on what this ban really means and so we decided to speak to business analysts on three points you should keep in mind about this ban. Especially as it concerns the everyday Nigerian.
- It is going to affect Nigerian Bitcoin platforms
This regulation, while being unclear, has the potential to shut down services and apps that are partly providing cryptocurrency services to Nigerians. This is particularly because they need Nigerian banks, which are being heavily targeted by this policy, for their work. And as you can imagine, shutting down those channels could have steep consequences for the Nigerian economy.
- Nigerians who already have bitcoin accounts do not have much to worry about.
From the viewpoint of all the business analysts and cryptocurrency experts we spoke to, this new law does not affect the average Nigerian’s bitcoin stash. Yes, they can no longer withdraw it through a Nigerian bank, but their money is safe and they can employ other means like the peer-to-peer option to be able to withdraw their money.
- It will make it harder for Nigerian entrepreneurs to access funds from foreign investors.
If you were worried about what this would mean for young Nigerian entrepreneurs looking for funding from foreign investors to set up, well according to the business analyst we spoke to, this law will surely deplete investor confidence in investing in Nigeria and subsequently growing the economy. And so while it is safe to continue to watch how this plays out, or if the government might reverse its decision as India did in 2020 after placing a ban on it in 2018 , this raises questions on the sustainability of investing in Nigeria and subsequently growing our economy.