Oracle Academy steps up ICT training in Nigeria

Oracle boosts
Nigeria training

New computing
education pathways.

ITWeb Africa

Friday, Oct 19th

Zim must invest in cryptocurrency says finance head

Zim must invest in cryptocurrency says finance head

Zimbabwe's newly appointed Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube said part of his plans to mitigate the country's ongoing cash shortage include pushing the Central Bank to establish a 'cryptocurrency unit' to better position the country to invest.

"Zimbabwe should be investing in understanding innovations and often central banks are too slow in investing in these technologies. But there are other countries which are moving faster. If you look at the Swiss central bank they are investing in- and understanding bitcoin," said Ncube.

"One can pay for travel using bitcoin in Switzerland. So, if these countries can see value in this and where it's headed, we should also pay attention. We have innovative youngsters so the idea shouldn't be to stop it and say don't do this, but rather the regulators should invest in catching up with them and find ways to understand it, then you regulate it because you now understand it", he added.

A liquidity crunch and cash shortages have been largely caused by depleting Nostro accounts as exports decline, and the over-issuance of Treasury Bills (TBs) to finance government spending.

This has forced most banks to impose stringent withdrawal limits, making it difficult to access savings.

Border towns such as Musina in South Africa and Francistown in Botswana, where international banks have operations, had become popular with Zimbabweans looking to access cash.

Bitcoin's success has created a number of competing cryptocurrencies, such as Litecoin, Namecoin, PPCoin and Bitmari in Zimbabwe.

Ncube's idea of embracing cryptocurrency, however, flies in the face of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ), which has remained cautious over virtual currencies.

The RBZ recently requested that financial institutions avoid cryptocurrency transactions for fear of possible problems from unregulated trading.

According to the circular signed by the RBZ registrar of banking institutions, Norman Mataruka, the RBZ said the measures were to protect the public and safeguard the integrity, safety, and soundness of the country's financial system.

Cryptocurrencies are not legal tenders in Zimbabwe, and the concern is that it may be used to fund illegal activities such as money laundering or supporting terrorism, said RBZ.

Zimbabwe's former minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Patrick Chinamasa announced the country's economy stands at "96% cashless."

Under the new administration, EcoCash, OneMoney, TeleCash, Zipit, bank cards, and the internet are prevalent and have mostly replaced cash transactions.


Zimbabwe moves to privatise ailing telcos Published on 09 October 2018

Finance Minister wants process completed in next nine months.

Zimbabwe mobile money tax revised Published on 08 October 2018

Officials respond to mounting pressure and review amounts, but insist tax will help generate much needed funds.

Crypto-backed solar programme launches in Uganda Published on 09 October 2018

Wala, CP-EM partner to create utility-scale, grid-connected renewable power systems.

Fujikura launches two new cleavers Published on 17 October 2018

Fujikura discontinued the famous CT-30A cleaver after 2 decades as well as the CT-06 cleaver. Out with the old and in with the new CT50 Bluetooth enabled cleaver and CT08 single fibre cleaver.