NIGERIAN CENTRAL BANK TO LAUNCH ITS DIGITAL CURRENCY

CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA SET TO LAUNCH e-NAIRA, AFFIRMS CRYPTOCURRENCY BAN 

■ The Central Bank of Nigeria has reiterated its earlier position against banks facilitating crypto transaction as its digital currency (e-Naira) is set to be launched in October. 

The apex bank governor, Godwin Emeifele, during the recent Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting disclosed the launch of e-Naira pilot program set to commence in October.

He said the importance of e-Naira includes cross-border trade facilitation, financial inclusion, monetary policy effectiveness, improved payment efficiency, revenue tax collection, remittance improvement, and targeted social intervention. 

The e-Naira will be operated on the Hyperledger Fabric Blockchain Network, an open-source platform built by the Linus Foundation specifically for enterprise-grade applications.  

Recall that in a circular dated 5th February 2021 and distributed to Nigerian-based financial institutions, the country’s central bank warned and reminded stakeholders in the Nigerian financial ecosystem against having any transaction in crypto or facilitating payments for crypto exchanges.

The apex bank claimed that crypto assets have been used to finance several illegal activities including money laundering and terrorism, insisting that cryptocurrencies issued by unregulated and unlicensed entities beg the question of legality.

The financial institutions were ordered to immediately close the accounts of such persons or entities transacting in or operating cryptocurrency exchanges. 

The launch of the e-Naira means the Central Bank of Nigeria can override or approve transactions because it has control of its infrastructure, unlike the pioneer crypto assets, where transactions are approved upon the agreement of majority nodes.●

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