|Nigeria||SEC introduces regulations for trading of digital crypto assets. The Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) has proposed a legal framework that will regulate cryptocurrency coins, tokens, and other tradable digital assets. According to the proposed regulation, these assets will be treated as securities and commodities and foreign participating institutions may be required to set up a local branch to operate in Nigeria. The Guardian|
|EDITOR'S NOTE||The proposed framework from the SEC is the most definitive and industry-friendly response from an African regulator on crypto till date. Cryptocurrency, which has seen a rise in adoption for multiple use cases in 2020, has had little to no attention from financial regulators. Up until now, the only regulatory stance on crypto has come from the CBN which in February 2018, deemed crypto instruments as illegal tender and further warned that participating issuers and investors were not protected by law in the event of a loss. Therefore, this proposed regulation of crypto and other digital assets by the SEC might help engender trust and drive even more adoption from consumers. |
|Global||Mastercard launches sandbox for central bank digital currencies (CBDCs). Mastercard has announced the launch of a virtual testing platform that will enable central banks and other relevant financial actors to simulate and access the usability of digital currencies. The platform will enable central banks to work with commercial banks and fintechs to assess the viability and compatibility of proposed CBDCs with existing legacy payment rails. Finextra|
|EDITOR'S NOTE||Central bank digital currency (CBDC) is the digital form of a country's currency issued to citizens as legal tender. This is unlike other decentralised cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum which are unregulated by the government and cannot be used as legal tender. While different countries have toyed with the idea of a digital currency, the recent interest in CBDCs picked up in 2017 when China announced interest in issuing e-money. Since then, the European Union and the United States have taking steps towards developing CBDCs.|
|South Africa||Ozow launches two new payment options. Ozow, a South African-based payments startup focused on cardless payments for businesses, has launched two new payment options for customers. OzApp, a QR-based Progressive Web App (PWA) and Ozow PIN, which allows customers, after making their first purchase, to create a pin to use on future Ozow checkouts for faster bank transfer payments. Disrupt Africa|
|Africa||Lending operations of African banks hit hard by COVID-19. Kenyan banks, Equity Bank and KCB, increased their allowance for bad loans during the first half of 2020. The increased provisions were attributed to COVID-led downturn in earning and repayment ability by borrowers. In Ghana as well, commercial banks have had to defer loan repayments worth about GHS3 billion due to the adverse effect of the pandemic on the economy. Kenyan Wall Street|
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