Despite CBN’s position on crypto, Nigerians interest in currency grows
March 15, 2021537 views0 comments
- A study by Invezz shows that Nigeria ranks 1st in Africa and 8th in the world with the most interest
Regardless the restrictive policy adopted by the Central bank of Nigeria (CBN), acting hawkish to stop Nigerians as well as all deposit money banks (DMBs), other financial institutions under the CBN regulatory spectrum from participating in the virtual exchange of digital currencies, Nigerians have continued to show interests in the trading of cryptocurrency by the day. A report by Invezz.com revealed that Nigeria the 8th country in the world and the top in Africa with the most interest in cryptocurrency.
Since its launch in 2008, cryptocurrency has been surrounded by a lot of skepticism, arguably demonstrated by 696,000 Google searches occurring globally each month. While digital currency has become of significant global interest over the last few years, seeing a 203 per cent Google trends increase over the last year alone with the asset class rising well above $60,000 in recent days following speculations that its value will surpass $55,000 with a $1 trillion market capitalisation. However, the currency saw a dip to $55,000 on Monday while its price is slowly attempting to push back up as the presence of bears begins to fade.
According to the report presented by Invezz, it shows that crypto traders in the United States are most interested in cryptocurrency with an astonishing 2,556,000 online searches on the subject of cryptocurrency each year. This is equivalent to 7,003 online searches per day. Following the log on second place with 804,000 annual online searches about cryptocurrency was India which is 69 per cent lower than the United States’ numbers despite following in the leader board. Furthermore, The United Kingdom follows in the third position with an average of 648,000 online searches about cryptocurrency on an annual basis. Among the other countries in the world where there are over 200,000 annual online searches about cryptocurrency, Indonesia (324,000) stand fourth, Canada (300,000) fifth, with Vietnam (276,000), and Australia (273,000) respectively ranking sixth and seventh.
Elsewhere, Nigeria claims the leader in Africa and eight in the world with 192,000 annual searches online and 16,000 monthly searches online. Meanwhile, early 2021 saw a boom in the cryptocurrency space as more and more Nigerians began exchanging their local currency for more of the digital asset in what seems to be a threat to the local currency from which the financial services sector regulator (CBN) has acted hawkish, and joining other sceptical central banks in the world to fight the buying and selling of the virtual currency owing to the fact that the digital asset is out of its control. Further afield, the continued surge in these virtual currencies such as Bitcoin Dogecoin, Ripples, XRP, amongst others have become worrisome to the apex bank in Nigeria as it feels that the application of restrictive policies to prevent Nigerians from participating in the virtual exchange is the only way to preserve the naira from further depreciating as a result of currency pressure.
Consequently, on the African scene, South Africa follows the rank as the second country with the most online searches of 94,800 and remains 14th on the global ranking with Kenya raking 3rd in Africa and 31st on the global ranking as a result of the decision by the Kenyan Central bank to adopt the digital asset as a means to hedge against inflation and also defend its local currency.
At the other end in 20th place is Singapore which recorded an average of 61,200 online searches relating to cryptocurrency each year. From the detailed report presented by Invezz analysts, it can be ascertained that the world’s most googled concerns about the digital asset in these countries includes the safety of the cryptocurrency; its worth as a good investment asset class, the legality of the asset which will eventually bring the level of acceptance, fundamentals behinds its rally and drops in recent times after its 2018 launch; as well as the level of scepticism about the digital asset with its being speculated as major threats to traditional finance.