According to a recent report released by Google, Nigeria emerged the first amongst other countries around the world in Bitcoin searches on Google.
The growth in cryptocurrency adoption in Nigeria is taking place despite the lack of recognition of cryptocurrencies as a legitimate medium of exchange by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). The CBN has warned banks against using, holding or transacting in virtual currencies because they are largely untraceable and anonymous, making them susceptible to abuse by criminals.
Unsurprisingly, a significant number of young Nigerians have started utilizing cryptos, in a bid to avoid the numerous challenges faced with the traditional money transfer services, such as high costs and slow speed, amongst others. This tech-savvy youth demographic and the struggling economy have created the perfect circumstances for Bitcoin usage to thrive, especially in commerce.
Apart from the US and Nigeria, other top 10 ranked countries include China, Canada, United Kingdom, India, Australia, Kenya, the Philippines, and South Africa.
The volume of bitcoin trades in Nigeria was 10 times more than that of Kenya, the second-largest African bitcoin market, trading 5,895 bitcoins worth $55.3 million in the last five years. The third-largest market on the continent is South Africa with 1,802 bitcoin trades valued at $18.9 million. In 2020 alone, Bitcoin trading in Nigeria increased by 102 percent. The value of the bitcoin market in Nigeria thus far this year is $213.7 million