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Crypto Trading is Not Banned in Nigeria

Crypto trading hasn’t been banned: Central Bank of Nigeria

An official from Nigeria’s central banks states that the financial institutions are banned from trading with crypto companies, but people can still continue to trade in crypto.

The Central Bank of Nigeria’s official rejected the claims that the bank has ever banned crypto.

Adamu Lamtek, a CBN official, stated that the bank protected the banking sector from cryptocurrencies and it didn’t ban crypto trading itself.

The clarification comes over a month after Nigeria’s central bank told all the banks to quickly cancel their services for the customers who buy, sell, or trade cryptocurrencies. It is not clear what made the bank’s decision.

“The CBN did not place restrictions from use of [sic] cryptocurrencies and we are not discouraging people from trading in it,” Lamtek said, “What we have just done was to prohibit transactions on cryptocurrencies in the banking sector.”

Lamtek spoke on behalf of the bank’s governor, Godwin Emefiele, and disclosed this in a recent meeting for journalists held by the bank in the Nigerian City, Abuja.

But those words should not be taken as the Nigerian government is endorsing crypto; the Central Bank has no jurisdiction over who can trade the cryptocurrencies to begin with, Danny Oyekan explained, he is the CEO of investment firm Dan Holdings and social payments app, Coins app.

Crypto is now under the jurisdiction of Nigeria’s Securities and Exchange Commission. Last September, Nigeria’s SEC announced the plans to regulate the crypto sector by making cryptocurrencies securities until it was proven otherwise.

Notwithstanding the regulatory uncertainty, Nigeria is sometimes called Africa’s bitcoin Nation for the country’s crypto trading volume outpaces the other countries in the world.

It has been only over a month since the Nigerian Central Bank’s ban on the financial institutions that deal with crypto companies came into force.

However, the Nigerian crypto industry didn’t die out.

“The industry has shown resilience and quickly adapted by developing peer-to-peer exchanges,” Oyekan said, “That’s not an easy feat to accomplish in 1-2 months.”

As a response to the ban, the OTC deals remain underway and the informal peer-to-peer market is also growing, Oyekan elaborated.

“So basically, the ban only forced the fiat channels underground.”

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