The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is considering licensing cryptocurrency in Ghana. Granted the SEC can do so within the coming months, all forms of crypto will be considered legal tender – in other words, legit money – for use within the nation’s borders.
This is, and always has been, the goal of cryptocurrency everywhere. Major assets like bitcoin were invented to give people without direct access to normal credit and banking options control over their finances, though many people behind these coins didn’t exactly make room for the volatility, price swings, hardcore regulation and malintent of users we’ve often been privy to since their introductions. It’s an unfortunate twist of fate, but it’s occurred nonetheless.
But some countries are now in line to receive crypto’s primary benefits, one of which is Ghana. At press time, officials within the region have banned businesses from conducting crypto transactions, but the SEC is looking at potential methods of getting currencies like bitcoin, Ethereum, XRP and Litecoin fully licensed within the nation.
Customers Needed Some Help
The move began when clients of the crypto firm Global Coin Community required assistance in garnering access to locked investments. At the time of writing, the platform is not fully licensed or registered, and warns users that trading will occur at their own risk.
Deputy director general of the SEC Paul Abadio believes that people need to stop dealing with unlicensed crypto entities, and comments:
“When you choose to go there, you are on your own. We have adopted a wide range of changes on it and we are still doing our research and gathering information, and we welcome any input that people might have to help us formulate a view on how we should deal with it in Ghana.”
Play with People Who Have Rules
He also explained that the country’s Economic and Organized Crime Office (EOCO) has begun investigating three separate cryptocurrency firms. He states that the operators of these firms are presently MIA:
“Some are even online businesses marketing certain products in Ghana, or at least they haven’t established a physical location yet. It’s been very preliminary and it’s a new area of our work that we are going to be quite strong on as well. We will be coming out shortly with a lengthier statement, and we’ll name some of these firms as well. I will say like three or four other firms. Firms illegally operating in the investment space; I think that will be how to characterize it.”
Bringing the Hammer Down
2019 is proving to be a year of sternness for the SEC, and the agency is refusing to mess around. Since late 2018, the organization has been cracking down on crypto companies that refuse to appropriately register their operations or “play around” too much with customers’ money. For example, last year was marred with news that companies like AirFox and Paragon Coin had failed to register their initial coin offerings (ICOs) properly, resulting in $250,000 fines for both entities.
Surprisingly, executives of both firms say they were pleased with the outcome(s) and are grateful that things weren’t any worse.
Africa and Crypto’s Relationship Grows
Interestingly, we’re also seeing lots of progress in the crypto space occurring in Africa. Recently, Blockonomi reported that Cameroon was in the process of developing its own separatist cryptocurrency. For years, the nation has been working to free itself from a Francophone government and regain control of its infrastructure. Among the first steps towards complete independence has been the development of a new digital asset that was first introduced through an ICO on Christmas Eve last year.
The coin – known as AmbaCoin – has already sold over 20,000 individual units at press time.