Cryptocurrencies are being rapidly adopted all over the world, even as many countries look to restrict trading and ownership. More and more people are showing interest in owning crypto, for multiple reasons, whether they be the rise in value of the likes of Bitcoin over the last 12 months, or the advantages that cryptocurrencies provide over fiat money. This trend has been seen all over the world, and one of the leading countries in terms of crypto adoption has been Nigeria. Nigeria is easily the biggest market for crypto in Africa – in fact, it is one of the largest crypto markets in the world, and so it is setting the pace for the rest of Africa with regard to adopting cryptocurrencies.
Leading crypto platforms such as Binance, Paxful, FTX and Crypto.com have already entered the Nigerian market, with more to follow, and this has been a further boost to the crypto industry in the country. Nigeria has already been one of the largest economies in terms of crypto adoption, and data from useful tulips, which is a BTC analytics data provider, shows that it led Africa for peer to peer lending in October 2020, with volumes over $32 million. For context, South Africa and Kenya, the two countries next on the list, only had lending volumes of $9 million and $7.4 million respectively.
One of the biggest reasons for this has been Nigeria’s demographics. Nigeria has a large proportion of youth in its population, with 32% of its 200 million people, and so it is easier for youngsters to adopt cryptocurrencies, due to their familiarity with technology. Another big reason for the popularity of crypto in Nigeria is that many people want to secure the value of their wealth and assets, due to the fact that the naira, which is the country’s fiat currency, is extremely susceptible to inflation. This is one of the biggest arguments for adopting crypto, not just in Nigeria but globally, and so we are seeing the effect of this in Africa especially, where a lot of countries have volatile and unstable currencies. It is also extremely easy and convenient to send and receive payments from outside Nigeria through cryptocurrencies, with low transaction fees as well, which is yet another reason for its popularity.
Another factor is that cryptocurrencies are now being adopted across various sectors and industries, which is also increasing its visibility and therefore increasing the user base. One such example is of the online gambling sector. Nigerians are extremely fond of gambling, and so the use of cryptocurrencies in online gambling sites has also helped increase the popularity of these sites. Players can play BTC games at https://winz.io/, and therefore this taps into two extremely popular themes for Nigerians – crypto and gambling. It is a similar story in other parts of the world too, and shows how crypto can be a catalyst for seemingly unrelated businesses to improve their prospects.
Many Nigerians also used Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies extensively last year during the #EndSARS protests against police brutality, where they were able to access money, and raise funds from abroad, even when the government had blocked many individuals’ bank accounts. The movement had gained a lot of global recognition as well, with many notable figures providing support – one such example came from the founder and CEO of Twitter, Jack Dorsey, who put out a tweet urging people to donate to support the protests, through Bitcoin. This shows the power that cryptocurrencies have, and is perhaps a reason why the Nigerian government has now cracked down on crypto trading in the country. Nevertheless, it is still extremely popular, and will continue to be used extensively by Nigerians as an alternative to fiat currency.No tags for this post.