REGULATION | The Namibian Government Officially Gazzettes the Virtual Assets Act 2023 into Law to Regulate Virtual Asset Service Providers

The Namibia Virtual Assets Bill is now a law after its gazzettment. Namibia now joins South Africa and Nigeria as the African countries to have introduced regulations targeting virtual assets.

The Namibian government has taken a significant step by officially signing a law to regulate Virtual Asset Service Providers (VASPs) within the country.

The law, which regulates Virtual Asset Service Providers (VASPs), was officially published in the Gazette of the Republic of Namibia on July 21 2023. Prior to this, the law had already been approved in Namibia’s National Assembly on July 6 2023 and subsequently signed by President Hage Geingob on July 14 2023.

The Namibia Virtual Assets Act 2023, which will take effect as a date to be determined by Namibia’s Ministry of Finance is seen as a pioneering bill that aims to establish a regulatory authority responsible for overseeing cryptocurrency exchanges and other virtual asset service providers within the country.

One of the primary objectives of the law is to guarantee the safety and well-being of consumers while also safeguarding against market exploitation and reducing the chances of money laundering and funding terrorism.

Providers found to be non-compliant may be subject to penalties of up to 10 million Namibian dollars ($671,000) and imprisonment for up to 10 years. The Bank of Namibia, the country’s central bank, continues to assert that cryptocurrencies will not be considered legal tender within the nation.


“When the associated risks that come with innovations such as virtual assets in the financial system are better managed, the bank will make the necessary assessments and pronounce itself on their acceptance,” said Kazembire Zemburuka, spokesperson of the Bank of Namibia.


With the gazzettment, the country’s designated crypto regulator will soon have powers to license virtual asset service providers and make new laws. Namibia now joins South Africa, Botswana, and Nigeria as the African countries to have introduced regulations targeting virtual assets.




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