Nigeria, the nation with the highest rate of cryptocurrency adoption after India, allowed lenders to deal with companies providing digital tokens, reversing a ban the central bank introduced in 2021, the BusinessDay reported.
The Central Bank of Nigeria asked lenders to open accounts for crypto firms, according to the report, which cited a circular dated Friday.
In February 2021, the central bank had ordered deposit-taking financial institutions to immediately close accounts transacting in or operating cryptocurrency exchanges, saying such deals are “prohibited.”
The easing of rules will be a boost for crypto exchanges, which have been seeking to expand in the nation that ranks second in blockchain data company Chainalysis Inc.’s adoption index.
Cryptocurrency transactions in Africa’s most-populated nation grew 9 percent, Chainalysis said in September, even as prices of virtual assets such as Bitcoin plunged.
Nigeria’s currency has weakened almost 49 percent this year after President Bola Tinubu eased rules in a bid to remove the spread between the official and unauthorized street rates. A depreciating currency spurred residents to seek crypto assets.
Source : Al Arabiya