Despite President Tinubu’s administration cracking down on cryptocurrency trading

Despite the crackdown on P2P cryptocurrency trading by President Tinubu’s administration, which has angered many young Nigerians, their enthusiasm for Bitcoin remains intact.

According to Google Trends statistics, Nigeria, the largest cryptocurrency market in Africa, is currently the country with the most interest in Bitcoin (BTC), closely followed by El Salvador.

Geographical analysis reveals that Delta State leads the pack in interest in Bitcoin, followed by states like Anambra, Ekiti, Enugu, Ondo, Ebonyi, Bayelsa, Osun, Edo and Imo. It is worth noting that Lagos, Nigeria’s main commercial hub, is not among the top 15 cities in terms of Google search interest in Bitcoin.

Data suggests that regions characterized by insecurity, low banking penetration, and a high percentage of millennials are more likely to adopt Bitcoin as a reliable way to store value and facilitate payments.

Nigerians have turned to stablecoins, primarily linked to the US dollar, as a way to protect themselves against inflation and currency fluctuations. USDT dominates the market as the most popular stable currency, and its use is becoming increasingly convenient for local businesses and expats to transact.

According to a study conducted by the United Nations, Nigeria is currently one of the youngest countries in the world and one of the fastest growing countries in Africa. The age group under 15 years old constitutes 43% of the population.

Crypto Market Tightening

The Nigerian government has recently taken questionable steps in an attempt to resolve economic problems and avoid a currency collapse.

In May 2024, the government of Nigeria began preparing to introduce new regulations banning peer-to-peer (P2P) cryptocurrency exchanges using the Nigerian naira, the national currency.

The Nigerian Securities Commission (SEC) has also accused cryptocurrency exchange Binance of engaging in currency manipulation and speculation, which it said led to the depreciation of the naira and necessitated the intervention of the government.

about: Foreign investments in Nigeria under threat due to Binance corruption allegations

The regulator’s tough stance was demonstrated earlier this year when it imposed a ban on Binance’s operations in Nigeria, followed by the arrest and detention of its top executives, Tigran Gambaryan and Nadeem Anggarwala, evidence of its resolve to comply with regulatory standards.

While Angarwala managed to escape, Gambarian was detained in Abuja and now faces charges of money laundering and tax evasion, which will lead to prosecution.

Meanwhile, in January 2024, the Central Bank of Nigeria issued initial guidelines for banks opening cryptocurrency accounts, although banks are still not allowed to trade or hold virtual assets in their own wallets investment.

review: Cryptocurrency Cleanup: How Much Is Too Much Enforcement?

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