The regulation law aims to create a favourable environment for cryptocurrencies. Some members of parliament oppose it with arguments such as money laundering and scams.
The Central African Republic (RCA) has become the centre of the latest buzz in the world of cryptocurrencies. According to reports on social media, the country has adopted bitcoin (BTC) as legal tender, in the style of El Salvador. However, sources on the African continent report a different reality.
On Thursday 21 April, the National Assembly of the African country unanimously approved a bill that provides for the regulation of the use of cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin in its territory, as reported by the media LeTsunami.
The proposal for this law was issued by the Minister of Digital Economy, Posts and Telecommunications, Justin Gourna Zacko, according to the same source. The official explained that the aim of this document is to “establish a favourable environment for the financial sector that meets the needs of the profession in this sector and all economic actors”. In addition, the country should have a legal framework governing cryptocurrencies and the businesses that use them.
Likewise, the minister assured that investing in this type of digital assets “has many benefits for millions of users”. He also referred to volatility in the market as an element that “should not be lost sight of”.
Most striking in the cabinet member’s remarks was his reference to the ability not to rely on central banks, with a very different stance to that usually taken by governments on the issue:
“With cryptocurrency, there is no more central bank control. You have your money, you send it to an investor for a business, you receive it in any currency, you can dispose of it in Dollar, Euro, CFA or Naira. There are so many advantages of cryptocurrencies, of which I cannot mention them all here, but first we would have to have the legal frameworks to allow any Central African to also benefit from this possibility to transfer money and receive money”.
False alarm: the country did “not adopt” bitcoin.
The report does not include any mention of the adoption of bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency as legal tender. However, media outlets such as Forbes Monaco and dozens of bitcoin users on social media reported this as a new country going the way of El Salvador.
Although this is not the case, there is still a group of local deputies who have shown their resistance to the approval of the law. Their arguments are the same as those of regulators and governments around the world: they consider bitcoin and cryptocurrencies to be a tool that facilitates money laundering, tax fraud and scams.
The Central African Republic is a country of about 623 square kilometres with a population of just over 5 million. In addition to a convulsive political situation, it is considered one of the poorest countries in the world, so its population could benefit from the use of assets such as bitcoin, as it would not depend on the economic policies of its rulers.