CRYPTOCURRENCIES; A RAPID PATH TO FINANCIAL INCLUSION.
Blockchain technology has engineered a gradual movement towards financial independence since its inception. According to Olivia Wang of ZhenFund, unequal access to financial resources as provided by blockchain technology simply meant unequal access to limitless opportunities in the global economic landscape. Today, with the aid of mobile phones and an internet connection, millions comfortably participate in the global economy from the confines of their homes, thereby directly or indirectly satisfying the major tenets of financial inclusion. Hence, what initially commenced from Nakamoto’s blueprint of a decentralized financial world is gradually becoming an invention that’s changing the financial trajectory of the world. Garnering mainstream attention, the increasing advantages of blockchain has escalated to differing factions of financial development.
Regardless, blockchain skeptics have managed to demean the existing benefits of cryptocurrencies, being digital assets created to support the generation, transfer, and storage of money. Similarly, the viability of the venture extends to investment and a veritable transaction medium for everyone, regardless of location, nationality, and socioeconomic status devoid of intermediate financial institutions. In this regard, financial inclusion qualifies as an attendant positive consequence of crypto adoption.
Financial inclusion presupposes that individuals and businesses have access to useful and affordable financial products and services that meet their needs (transactions, payments, savings, etc) delivered responsibly and sustainably. According to the World Bank, it can also serve as a key enabler of poverty reduction and boost property, given that close to one-third of adults ( 1.7 billion people) are still unbanked, according to the 2017 Global Findex Database.
Determining the roles of cryptocurrencies in achieving financial inclusion isn’t far-fetched as the venture has provided tangible mechanisms in achieving financial inclusion.
Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum amongst others have guaranteed financial inclusion owing to their decentralized nature devoid of a central controlling system. The open blockchain ledger of these digital assets and its transparent traceability have allowed for seamless transactions across national borders within a shorter period. Cryptocurrencies, being a digital asset and also a decentralized currency, have attracted lower transaction fees, faster value transfers, and fewer financial system burdens which are prevalent in the traditional currency and mobile money. Similarly, it has also offered financial access to persons who had previously been denied access to finance the opportunity to open and use a bank account.
Again, with cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, persons with strong computational skills can earn by mining Bitcoin. The process involves solving complex mathematical puzzles to validate transactions and mint new Bitcoin tokens. Businesses and individual Bitcoin users have also made money by lending tokens to other users. These opportunities reduce unemployment and promote access to financial resources.
The journey towards financial inclusion has taken a new turn in Africa. Afridex, a leading blockchain technology company, has undertaken to ignite a financial future via building blockchain-based products that develop solutions to counter issues within the financial industry. The Afridex journey towards fostering financial inclusion in Nigeria has commenced with the launch of the Afridex Exchange, a tokenized platform for products and start-ups. A seamless P2P transacting function that aids the transfer of value among millions of people in a relatively short period with affordable financial charges developed on high-level security architecture has been incorporated into the Afridex Exchange. Our step to ensuring a financially inclusive economy across the shores of Africa has commenced with the soon coming launch of our Exchange.
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