Central African Republic adopts Bitcoin as legal tender

The Central African Republic is the second country in the world to use Bitcoin as a reference currency after El Salvador.
The Central African Republic is the second country in the world to use Bitcoin as a reference currency after El Salvador (Marco Bello / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / AFP / Archives).

According to the United Nations, the Central African Republic, the world’s second-latest developing country, has adopted Bitcoin as the official currency alongside the CFA franc and legalized the use of cryptocurrencies, the president announced Wednesday. Do so in Africa, which guarantees that it is the first country.

The Parliament voted “unanimously” by lawmakers presenting a law “controlling the cryptocurrency of the Central African Republic,” which was promulgated by President Faustin-Archen Tuadera, and in a press release the Secretary of State and the president’s counselors. Guarantees President Obed Namcio, Addition: The Central African Republic is “the first country in Africa to adopt Bitcoin as a reference currency”.

On September 7, 2021, El Salvador was the first country in the world to adopt Bitcoin as legal tender, and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is dangerous for “financial stability, financial integrity, consumer protection”. Immediately condemned the decision.

“This approach puts the Central African Republic on a map of the world’s most courageous and visionary countries,” and conversely believes in the presidency of the Central African Republic, which has been in a state of civil war since 2013.

Supporters of President Faustin-Archangea de la in Bangui on March 18, 2022
Supporters of President Faustin-Archen Tuadera (Barbara DEBOUT / AFP) held in Bangui on March 18, 2022

At the end of 2020, a majority of armed groups, which occupied two-thirds of the territory, launched an attack on President Tuadera’s power to seek help from Moscow. Russian paramilitaries, which have already existed since 2018, have come alongside Central African soldiers as reinforcements to repel rebel attacks.

But the United Nations, international NGOs, and former colonial ruler France, like the rebellion, regularly blame “crimes” committed by “mercenaries” from Russian private security company Wagner. .. He accused Mr. Tuadera of putting the country under Wagner’s control and asserted that Wagner was “looting” the country’s resources, especially precious minerals.

Thierry Bercoulomb, a Central African expert at the French Institute for International Relations (IFRI), told AFP that “organizational corruption and relationships with Russian partners under international sanctions have raised suspicions. I’m doing it. ” “It’s important to note that Russia is looking for ways to avoid international sanctions,” he continued.

Central bank concerns

According to the president, “the law was passed with applause,” but some members of the opposition declared on Wednesday that they would “attack the law in the Constitutional Court,” to AFP Martin Zigere, now the opposition’s deputy prime minister.

“This law is a way to get out of the CFA franc by means of emptying the entity’s common currency (…), it’s not a national priority, this approach asks: who benefits from crime Is it? “, He continued.

Militia at the entrance to Bangui's PK5 district on November 15, 2017
Militia (FLORENT VERGNES / AFP) at the entrance of PK5 district in Bangui on November 15, 2017

“The purpose of this law is to control all transactions related to the Central African Republic’s cryptocurrencies, whether public or private, without restrictions carried out by natural or legal persons”, especially “Trade”. The texts that refer to “Online Activities”, “All Electronic Transactions”, and even “Tax Burden”. The law also states that “cryptocurrency exchanges are not taxable”.

Bitcoin volatility can cause dizziness. In 2021, prices rose by more than 150% to a record high of $ 68,991, but then fell by more than 30%.

Even if the market settles in 2022, the volatility remains very strong. It is -17% in February, + 8% in March, and + 10% in April. Bitcoin was trading on Wednesday for over $ 39,000.

For the time being, only El Salvador and the Central African Republic have adopted Bitcoin as fiat currency, according to the specialized site Coinmarketcap.com, but other countries are considering doing so and are moving the legislative process in this direction. Some countries have started.

In Ukraine, the government accepted cryptocurrency donations and raised more than $ 100 million in the early stages of the conflict to facilitate war effort.

However, Western central banks are also concerned about the possibility that they will be used to circumvent the sanctions imposed on Russia, and the demand for international regulation is increasing in the United States and Europe.

In addition, many countries around the world are discussing the possibility of creating their own centralized digital currencies.

bdl-gir-dyg-js / jhd / blb

■■