Africa’s BEAC Could Launch Common Digital Currency

The Bank of Central African States (BEAC), which serves Cameroon, Gabon, Chad, the Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea and the Central African Republic (CAR), could become the first regional bank on the continent to launch a common digital currency.

BEAC was urged to advance the move by its board of directors in meetings held on July 20 and 21 in Cameroon’s economic Douala, Bloomberg reported on Friday (July 22). The central bank for the region was also urged to promote regional financial inclusion.

The board’s call to action was emailed in a statement signed by its head, Herve Ndoba following the meetings, per the report.

See also: Stablecoins, CBDCs Face Big Hurdles Before Knocking Out Fiat

Stablecoins and central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) could replace fiat for payments in the pan-African region but issues around regulatory compliance and interoperability would have to be addressed first, PYMNTS reported on Thursday (July 21).

Since Nigeria’s launch of the e-naira in October 2021, several sub-Saharan African central banks are eyeing digital currencies or are already in the trial stages of a launch plan, Bloomberg reported. The central bank’s move toward a common digital currency follows opposition to the CAR’s adoption of Bitcoin in April.

Read more: Central African Republic Set to Start Crypto Sales

The CAR is planning to start selling its own cryptocurrency, Sango Coin, PYMNTS reported last week, with sales set at a minimum investment of $500, payable in cryptocurrency.

Sales of the new coin are set to begin on Monday (July 25) according to a press release. President of CAR Faustin-Archange Touadéra announced the adoption of Bitcoin as a legal tender on April 21.

Bitcoin as legal tender in CAR is “incompatible with the agreements and conventions governing the Central African Monetary Union and the Statutes of the Bank of Central African States,” the central bank told Bloomberg.

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