Nigeria is experiencing a boom in interest in cryptocurrencies.
Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has introduced the digital currency, eNaira, in Africa’s largest economy seeking to take advantage of the growing popularity of virtual money and cryptocurrencies.
With eNaira, Nigeria became the first country in sub-Saharan Africa to launch a digital currency, joining China and several other countries that use or whose central banks are preparing regulations to introduce a digital currency.
We became the first country in Africa and one of the first in the world to introduce a digital currency for our citizens
, Buhari said at the official promotion at the beginning of the week.
Nigeria is experiencing a boom in interest in cryptocurrencies as people look for ways to avoid the weakening of the existing naira currency and to cope with the high cost of living and unemployment in Africa’s most populous country.
Digital currencies backed by central banks, or CBDCs, as well as for cryptocurrencies, are virtual money, with CBDCs being the legal tender regulated by central banks, while cryptocurrencies are out of state control.
Five countries around the world have already launched the CBDC, while another 14, including Sweden and South Korea, are in a pilot phase according to CBDC data monitored by the Atlantic Council.
In West Africa, Ghana also intends to launch its own CBDC currency soon.