The Zimbabwe Minister of finance, Mthuli Ncube, recently visited DMCC Crypto Centre in Dubai, a UAE facility that says it is building the largest ecosystem for cryptographic, blockchain, and distributed ledger technologies in that country.
Ncube has been one of the leading ministers in talking up cryptocurrencies. His comments are appreciated as an indication of his openness to the possibilities that crypto and blockchains present.
The promise of cryptocurrencies are particularly interesting for ZImbabwe, a country which has experienced difficult currency inflation issues forcing it to adopt the United States dollar.
Many players in the crypto industry in Zimbabwe are however not very impressed with the decision of the minister to talk up solutions from other countries yet there are solutions within the country.
One such person Victor Mapunga, CEO of Flexfintx, an identity management blockchain startup, has indicated that Zimbabwe already has enough blockchain and crypto startups.
Besides Flexfintx, a local report has wondered why the Minister had to seek out solutions from UAE before listing the startups that are dealing in solutions that address costly transactions.
Some of the startups in Zimbabwe include:
Currently, Zimbabwe is experiencing one of the worst inflation rates in the world.
Prices of goods, from groceries to building materials, have all gone up in Zimbabwe in 2021 which risks pushing up inflation which slowed down in May 2021 from a decade high of 838%.
Inflation in Zimbabwe stands as follows:
- July 2020 – 838%
- January 2021 – 363%
- May 2021 – 162%
A recent report by Chainalysis has established that some of the leading reasons behind adoption in emerging markets of Africa are:
- Many turn to cryptocurrency to preserve their savings in the face of currency devaluation
- Send and receive remittances
- Carry out international business transactions
Cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin are favorable for such purposes because of their low to zero transaction costs on various exchanges, particularly on P2P platforms like Localbitcoins and Paxful that are preferred across the continent.
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