01 Jul VIDEO AND BLOG: Evolvement of Digital Payments across Sub-Saharan Africa: Digital currencies, Stablecoins, CBDCs, Digital Platforms

NOTES FOR VIDEO: Evolvement of Digital Payments Across Africa: 

Let’s summarise this from four angles - digital currency, stablecoins, CBDC’s and digital platforms. 

All of whom are in a race to adoption and each will have its heyday. 

Decentralised digital currencies like Monero, Decred, Zcash, Dash, Stellar will have varying levels of uptake but sporadic as they do not have enough adoption drivers.  They do well in a fiat crisis situation like Zimbabwe.  XRP will be in a class of its own as the rails of crossborder payments. 

Centralized digital currencies like Libra, Facebook Pay if they can get into the market will completely transform the world of payments as we know it.  They have mass consumer loyalty and eyeballs, and the convenience will likely trump most other payments methods.  This is if they don’t get squashed as they have experienced in USA, Europe, India and Brazil.  

Stablecoins are the next wave of crypto payments across SSA.  They have their challenges skirting close to the licensing and regulation line which could retard their momentum.  If they get in under the radar and achieve critical mass they will be a great asset to frictionless money mobility across SSA and trading and payment globally. 

CBDC’s are government’s big weapon and opportunity globally and Africa could be no exception.   CBDC’s give government and and central banks ultimate control over money supply, use and taxation and visibility of the behaviours of their citizens depending on the level of privacy.  Global CBDC experts like Cardano, Cosmos, Hyperledger, Consensys are cooperating with central banks for design and piloting of CBDCs.  CBDCs will facilitate  immediate adoption of digital fiat in each jurisdiction and could over time, with linkages to other CBDCs, catalyse cross border trade and paymentability, bringing millions of African consumers into the global market. 

Digital payment platforms will play a big role in developing a parallel “banking” system.  The DeFi sector has blown up as a result of the innovative ways of providing traditional banking services with minimal or no intermediaries, at low cost to a smartphone holder anywhere in the world.  SSA is particularly interested and favourable towards platforms because they make it easy and cost effective for Africans to transact and participate in “banking” and “financial” services which was previously exclusive to the developed markets. 


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