Bitcoin companies are gradually shifting their focus towards emerging economies. Companies like BitX have already targeted Indonesia and recently Nigeria to offer their Bitcoin wallet and exchange services. Now another emerging economy, Zimbabwe has entered into the picture.
According to a report recently published by Simba Machiridza, Zimbabwe might be the ideal location to start Bitcoin based businesses. Simba, who is a lawyer mentions that his country can potentially adopt Bitcoin as an alternative to its current financial framework which supports a multicurrency regime. The white paper was created as a part of the study he conducted on viability of the widely adopted digital currency.
Zimbabweans are on a look out for alternative payment options than the ones they already have as the existing ones are neither cost-effective nor convenient. Incidentally, the current laws in Zimbabwe can be easily interpreted for Bitcoin as well, thereby readily adopting it as a form of currency. In addition to the laws, the country has a really good internet penetration which makes Bitcoin adoption easier for people across the country.
Zimbabwe has stopped using the Zimbabwean dollar for the past 6 years while liberalizing the country’s forex regime. Currently the economic system in Zimbabwe facilitates the use of 9 different currencies as legal tender after the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe initiated the process of demonetization of the Zimbabwean dollar in the previous month.
Due to issues concerning liquidity in the Zimbabwean economy, many mobile services have started entering the market. This effectively reduceing the entry barrier for Bitcoin business in the territory, enabling them to start operating immediately. Simba also mentions that the existing National Payments Systems Act of Zimbabwe has certain provisions which can be applied for Bitcoin as well. However, the companies offering Bitcoin services will have to make few accommodations to align its business with existing regulations. These changes includes the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe mediating the Bitcoin payments setup and administration in the region.