Mthuli Ncube, Zimbabwe’s Finance Minister, had in recent days said that cryptocurrencies could be a useful tool for remittances from abroad.
Mthuli Ncube. The Minister of Zimbabwe who is hopeful about cryptocurrencies
He thus hinted that perhaps the rigid attitude held so far by the government on the issue was faltering.
“I visited the DMCC CRYPTO CENTRE in Dubai, which is a fascinating incubation hub for crypto currency and payment solutions. Came across solutions that could lower charges for diaspora remittances”,
This was Ncube’s tweet after his visit to the DMC CRYPTO Center in Dubai
A year ago, Ncube had spoken about blockchain technology and its important applications such as cryptocurrencies. He had referred to the model of Switzerland, a country with a very favourable regulation towards digital currencies.
The Finance Minister, already during his appointment in 2018, had triggered the enthusiasm of the crypto community, precisely because of his favourable lines towards blockchain and cryptocurrencies. Only a year earlier, the Central Bank of Zimbabwe had decided to ban all cryptocurrency transactions by the country’s banks. Transactions involving cryptocurrencies, going so far as to describe Bitcoin and other altcoins as the currency of choice for money launderers and other criminals.
These words have rekindled the hopes of many for a change of pace on the part of the government, which however does not seem inclined to adopt a softer attitude towards cryptocurrencies for the time being.
Zimbabwe won’t give up control of its currency
According to one of the country’s analysts and crypto experts, Batanai Moyo, the Zimbabwean government is definitely not willing to “give up some of its power in terms of controlling the monetary system”. This is what he said in an interview with the Arab television network Al Jazeera. With the increased adoption of digital currencies, this could very well happen.
Zimbabwe, like many African countries, has long struggled with the problem of hyperinflation. In 2020, consumer prices rose by 53.6% compared to the previous year. According to many experts and the current Minister of Finance, cryptocurrencies could be of great help to an economic situation that is now out of control.
It is likely, therefore, that a greater development of blockchain technology related to finance and the economy will initially be pursued. Not least because there are already some blockchain start-ups in the country, as in many other African countries. For Victor Mapunga, CEO of Flexfintx, the country already has a certain culture in the field of blockchain and would be ready to implement new solutions for the difficult economic situation.
In March 2020, the country signed a partnership with Apollo Fintech, a blockchain company, to develop the project of a digital currency linked to the value of gold. This could soon be available to citizens, but always under the strict control of the central monetary authorities.