Nigeria, on Monday, 25th October 2021, unveiled the eNaira, Africa’s first digital currency. This introduces a new peak to the Africa tech-space and a means to boost Nigeria’s economy.
What is eNaira?
The eNaira is simply Nigeria’s Naira with the same value, but not existant in physical form. It exists instead, as a digital value in a digital wallet similar to a regular bank account, but not withdrawable.
The CBN claims the eNaira will foster economic growth and aid cheaper diaspora remittances. More importantly, it could have been setup as a regulated alternative to other cyptocurrencies like bitcoin; referencing the barring of financial institutions from completing cryptocurrency transactions last year.
How does eNaira compare to cryptocurrencies?
First, eNaira is not a cryptocurrency. The eNaira and cyptocurrencies like bitcoin are digital assets, the major difference being that bitcoin is a Decentralised Finance(DeFi) instrument. Transactions in bitcoin are unlimited and untraceable to a particular source or destination. On the other hand, the CBN regulates the eNaira (Centralised Finance) hence the BVN requirements for registeration. Consquently, Nigeria’s digital currency is less volatile and cannot yield interest as bitcoin or other decentralised finance instuments would.
How do I get the eNaira?
To access the eNaira, download the eNaira Speed Wallet from your mobile phone store, fill in your details and fund your account. Check the official website for download links. Once funded you can make transactions on accepted platforms or transfer between your regular bank accounts if you need to withdraw your funds.