The growth and usage of digital currencies like cryptocurrencies in the African countries

By Wirba Brice Divine Ransinyuy. [email protected]

African countries are yet to fully embrace the advent of the latest technologies be it cryptocurrencies a form of digital currency or the blockchain technology. This is just to mention the fact that the African continent still has a quite long way to go. Despite this, it does not mean cryptocurrencies or the blockchain technology are not yet available in this continent. There are countries that are already practising and using cryptocurrencies apart from cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, some African countries move forward by creating their own cryptocurrency for the service of their society.

With this omnipotent rise in the use of cryptocurrencies countries in the North of African have taken a step forward by launching and issuing their own cryptocurrency. This is notably and particularly the case with Tunisia. It is very surprising the astonishing fact this country is has portrayed in the establishment of cryptocurrency in their country in particular and in the African continent as a whole. In the year 2015, Tunisia is known as the first country in the whole world to have established and issued a blockchain based national cryptocurrency known as BitDinar or Digicash, though it is formally known in the appellation of BitDinar. This project saw the light with the participation of Monetas which is Switzerland based Software Company in the integration of the new technology to be compatible with the Tunisian’s Dinar that is matching BitDinar to be on the same length with Dinar the national currency in terms of value. Same like the national currency that has a governing body, BitDinar also has a governing and controlling body known as La Poste or better still La Poste Tunisian with the acronyms of (LPT). With the collaboration of Monetas in Tunisia, it is known to be the first appliance of a full ecosystem of digital payments as Tunisians can use their private smartphones to carry out financial transactions like instant money transfers, payment of salaries and bills, payment for goods and services in person and online and also being able to manage official government documents like the ones of identification.

It is obvious the use of cryptocurrencies in the African continent is slow, but it is promising with many users springing from this continent coming mostly from the countries of Nigeria and Ghana. There is a huge mass of users of bitcoins found in these countries, though the various mentioned countries are yet to establish and issue their own national cryptocurrencies. With the huge number of users coming from these countries, it is just a manner of time for them to establish and issue their own national cryptocurrencies with Kenya being the new comer in the list being one of the only countries where it is possible to mine Bitcoin, a type of cryptocurrencies.

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