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Nigeria’s Central Bank Announces Plans to Launch Digital Currency

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has reportedly sent a document to banks in the country detailing the design of its soon-to-be launched e-naira digital currency, as well as information on the roles assigned to participants involved in the currency rollout.

According to bitcoin.com, the digital currency, which will be launched by Oct. 1, will have a legal tender and non-interest-bearing asset status, while imposing a limit on both customer and value-based transactions.

A total of five stages have been identified as part of the e-naira rollout, with the first dedicated to the “issuing, distribution, redemption, as well destruction of the currency.”

During the second stage, called the Financial Institution Suite, licensed financial institutions will be able to request currency and issue stable coins, while identifying suspicious activity across branches as part of an anti-money laundering program.

The third stage will involve the government processing digital payments made by customers and merchants, after which businesses “will provide low-cost payment and business management software, POS, remote payment solutions, online capabilities, transaction analysis and reconciliation” at the penultimate stage.

Finally, the last stage, the Retail Consumer Suite, will focus on the architecture of the digital currency, providing user-centered designs and features advancing privacy and security.

Read more: Nigeria’s Central Bank Closes Crypto Accounts Citing Threats To Financial Stability

The announcement of the digital currency comes at a time when the CBN has been receiving backlash from the public following a recent ban on cryptocurrency transactions.

In February, the bank issued an order to financial institutions and deposit money banks asking for the immediate closure of all crypto-related accounts, due to “their unregulated and unlicensed status and their popularity with criminals seeking to launder money, evade taxes, deal in illegal trades and fund terrorism.”

See also: Nigeria Renews Cash-For-Digital-Remittance Offer

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