According to President Faustin-Archange Touadéra, the Central African Republic is fully ready to embrace cryptocurrency after announcing that it will launch Africa’s first legal cryptocurrency investment hub. Despite the warning from the International Monetary Fund, the third world country is planning to integrate cryptocurrency into its economic policy fully.
The country has experienced an extended period of political and tribal conflict which has negatively affected the overall economic development. However, Central African Republic became the first country in Africa and the second worldwide to adopt bitcoin as an official currency.
Nevertheless, the soon-to-be-launched “SANGO” crypto initiative is open to potential investors, who are to sign up for a waiting list on the official website.
Speaking on the new development on Monday, the President said:“The formal economy is no longer an option.” “An impenetrable bureaucracy is keeping us stuck in systems that do not give a chance to be competitive.” He added.
How SANGO Will Transform The Economy
The country’s National Assembly started the initiative with the support of the president, who provided a 24 paged document explaining the project’s goals. According to the document, SANGO seeks to “pave the way to a digital future of endless possibilities.”
Additionally, SANGO aims to take “the Bitcoin legacy to the next level” and institute a “cryptocurrency economic zone” on Sango Island, where investors can propose, view and contribute to its future developments.
The document also stated that the Central African Republic’s plans include “facilitating land acquisition in bitcoin for investors worldwide” and creating a Digital National Bank. In addition, the government said in the document that it would also “fully support” access to the country’s natural resources, such as gold, diamonds, uranium, lithium and oil.
The Platform’s legal framework will influence the country’s commercial sector by including an e-residency program, citizenship by investment, and online business registration. The government aims to achieve these goals before the end of 2022.
Furthermore, the document also noted a move to create a Bitcoin wallet powered by the Lightning Network, Bitcoin’s second-layer protocol, which supports cheaper and faster transactions. Aside from sending, receiving and storing Bitcoin, the wallet will also be compatible with point-of-sale (PoS) for businesses to accept bitcoin payments and feature an integrated accounting system.
The government also plans to finalise the Central African Backbone (CAB) internet interconnection before the end of the year to power its “entire digital transformation,” it said in the document.
The country is rich in gold, diamond and other natural resources. However, it lacks the necessary digital infrastructure to allow cryptocurrency to thrive on a larger scale, making a move to adopt bitcoin look doubtful.
Many experts have raised eyebrows, including lawmakers and even the International Monetary Fund. In addition, Central Africa’s regional banking regulator for the six-nation Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa also sent out a reminder about its ban on cryptocurrencies, stating the prohibition was meant to ensure financial stability, given that the digital asset class is volatile and difficult to regulate.