Sunday, 05 April 2020

Cryptocurrencies Finding Fertile Soil to Flourish in Africa

The use of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology can finally help bring investors to new lands they would have never considered before.
Africa has suddenly emerged as a new fertile ground for investors, mainly in the agricultural market. The hope is that they can bring desperately needed help while also making big profits.
Since the rise of cryptocurrencies, they have been looked at as a way not only to maintain trade but also to keep assets out of harm’s way. That has been especially true in highly conflict-prone countries and places with unstable economies.

Sadly, many African countries fit the description of being prone to conflict and having unstable economies. This has made them the perfect fit for investors. They are able to buy inexpensive land, bring new technologies and pay for workers at low salaries to produce a wide range of agricultural products, which they then sell on the world market. Africa is becoming to agriculture what Asia is to manufacturing. And cryptocurrencies are leading the charge in the market as they can be used as a universal currency to stay away from the political conflicts of the area that tend to weaken local economies.

Putting Money Back Into Africa Through Cryptocurrencies

Agriculture has not been the only industry that is booming across Africa. Services using cryptocurrency are flourishing too. An example of this is BTC Ghana, which uses cryptocurrency to allow Ghana natives from all over the world to send money back to their homeland. As of this year, Ghana’s GDP is expected to grow at a rate of around 8.3%, according to the World Bank. It is one of the world’s fastest-growing economies.

Using similar services, also countries like Ethiopia and Cote d’Ivoire are benefiting both from foreign investment and locals abroad sending cash to grow their local economies.

Blockchain Is a Necessity in Places Like Africa

Recently, CNBC put out a documentary that explored the difficulties that people in Africa face to transfer money from one place to another. People working in more industrialized areas like Cape Town, South Africa, who want to send money back home in Zimbabwe have a couple of options on how to do so. But none of them are very cost-effective or safe.

Sending money through banks takes weeks, and sometimes local banks don’t have enough physical money to give out. Sending wire transfers charges 10 percent of the total amount as a fee, and another option involves giving bus drivers cash to be delivered to people in foreign countries. These options are neither easy, effective nor safe.

Projects like the one developed by Olam which intend to connect African farmers with companies from across the world bring hope that these areas can finally receive some much-needed investments to improve their infrastructure. These initiatives could indicate that effective solutions to many of the issues we point out may be close. With the way things work with local banks and governments, a blockchain based solution seems like the best option. As long as governments don’t get greedy and ban the use of cryptocurrencies, like the recent ban that the Zimbabwe government passed, which has since been revoked.

In short, as the documentary points out, if you want to make money or save the world through cryptocurrencies, Africa is the place to be!

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