South African Finance Minister To View Cryptocurrencies With A “Balanced Approach”

At a South African parliamentary discussion last week, Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba announced they would start to look at cryptocurrencies and Bitcoin with a “balanced approach” when it comes to introducing regulations.

When responding to a question from the opposition party regarding the government’s position 0n regulation of South Africa’s emerging cryptocurrency economy, Finance Minister Gigaba stated the South African government would look at cryptocurrency with a “balanced approach.”

He also stated that the blockchain technology has a lot of potential for other purposes besides circulating digital tokens.

“The underlying blockchain technology also has a lot of potential to be used for purposes other than creating cryptocurrency. Blockchain technology is a cheap, effective and increasingly safe way to do transactions as well as to transfer money from one person or institution to another.”

Minister Gigaba reaffirmed that while virtual currencies are not regulated out of the government’s reach, a number of institutions were being instructed to explore them but have not yet come to a final decision.

“As noted, the relevant authorities continue to monitor and assess the use of virtual currencies and consult with private sector stakeholders in this regard. Further guidance or regulations may be issued, should the need arise,” Finance Minister Gigaba said.

“The National Treasury together with the SARB, FIC, and FSB have also established an Intergovernmental Fintech Working Group in December 2016, to develop an approach and potential revised policy stance towards fintech, including crypto-currencies, and to deal with fast-emerging fintech matters in the financial sector, like crowdfunding, robo-advice, machine learning and alternate payment platforms.”

In mid-July, the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) announced it would start testing several regulations related to Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies within the coming months.

Then, in late July, Tanya Knowles, the managing executive of Fractal solutions at Strate, gave a live demonstration of how South African businesses can use blockchain technology, BusinessTech.co.za reported.

Michael Jordaan, the former CEO of First National Bank (FNB), recently voiced his opinion on the surge in popularity of digital currencies, stating that he believes digital assets will compete with fiat by 2025.

How long until the blockchain and cryptocurrency business boom hits South Africa? Let us know what you think.

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