According to Reuters, The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) will launch the eNaira digital currency in a few days, Governor Godwin Emefiele said at a conference on Thursday.
One of the first African countries to launch a digital currency
The CBN had announced plans to launch its own digital currency this year after Nigeria banned banks and financial institutions from trading cryptocurrencies in February. The governor said that when they launch their digital currency this would make Nigeria “one of the first countries in Africa, and indeed the globe, to adopt the digitization of its national currency”.
Emefiele had earlier said that the eNaira would act as a wallet against which customers could hold existing balances in their bank accounts. This would speed up financial inclusion and enable cheaper and faster remittance flows. CBN has nominated Barbados-based Bitt Inc as a technical partner for eNaira development.
Nigeria is optimistic about its digital currency
Although the CBN is yet to announce a new date for the launch of the e-Naira, some Nigerians like Daniel Yerimah, a digital strategist, stated that he is hopeful that this central bank digital currency (when launched) will help authorities curb corruption and money laundering.
Despite the optimism displayed by both the CBN and blockchain experts, there are still concerns that “the emergence of CBDCs will curtail the role of intermediary banks and give the central bank more control over the financial rights of citizens,”, but this would not really be the case if the CBN decides to a portal where each e-naira user will be able to access their e-wallet through the database they already have with their bank.