‘Prepare for Crypto’ Says Tanzanian President to Financial Chiefs

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In Brief
  • Tanzania’s President Samia Suluhu Hassan said her country should prepare for the greater adoption of cryptocurrencies.

  • This makes Tanzania the latest country to advocate for greater crypto usage, after El Salvador adopting Bitcoin as legal tender.

  • Meanwhile, the largest growth in P2P bitcoin trading volume has recently taken place in Africa.

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Tanzania’s President Samia Suluhu Hassan said her country should prepare for the greater adoption of cryptocurrencies.

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In a speech in Mwanza on Sunday, President Suluhu told the country’s financial chiefs to prepare for cryptocurrency. She also declared that the age of crypto and blockchain was dawning, urging her country to lead by example. “We have witnessed the emergence of a new journey through the internet,” she stated. 

However, she also noted that many “have not accepted or started using these routes”. Signaling cryptocurrencies as the future of finance, she urged the Central Bank to “start working on that development.”.

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She added that it should “be ready for the changes and not be caught unprepared.”. These overtures implicitly indicate that the Central Bank could start work on a central bank digital currency (CBDC).

National adoption

These remarks come on the heels of El Salvador adopting bitcoin as legal tender, as more countries around the world increasingly accept cryptocurrencies. El Salvador President Nayib Bukele initially spoke about the benefits of adopting bitcoin, during the recent Bitcoin conference in Miami. These included an increase in jobs and boosted investment in El Salvador.

Shortly thereafter on June 9, President Bukele submitted a bill that would recognize bitcoin as legal tender in the country. The bill then passed, making El Salvador the first country in the world to recognize bitcoin as legal tender. With the adoption underway, President Bukele announced that he would use energy from volcanoes to power bitcoin mining.

Usage in Africa

Meanwhile, back in Africa, P2P bitcoin trading volumes grew 50% year-on-year in May, totaling at over $17 million in volume. Over the past six months, most African nations have shown a 15-to-30% increase in bitcoin trading volume.

For reference, North America actually experienced an 18% drop in trading volume. However, while North America remains the most active, P2P trading volume is growing the fastest in Africa.

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Nick is a data scientist who teaches economics and communication in Budapest, Hungary, where he received a BA in Political Science and Economics and an MSc in Business Analytics from CEU. He has been writing about cryptocurrency and blockchain technology since 2018, and is intrigued by its potential economic and political usage. He can best be described as an optimistic center-left skeptic.

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