10-03-20 by Spotlight Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe’s Stock Exchange Open to Crypto Listing

Terence Zimwara

Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE) CEO Justin Bgoni says its recently licensed subsidiary, the Victoria Falls Stock Exchange is open to listing bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. However, according to local media reports, any such listings are still dependent on the digital asset issuers getting “regulatory approval.”

The report does not provide any details of requirements that cryptocurrency issuers must meet for their respective tokens to get listed. Furthermore, some in Zimbabwe’s small crypto community are still skeptical about the announcement especially since it is not coming from the regulators. Others say the statement attributed to the ZSE executive exposes the limited understanding of decentralized cryptocurrencies like bitcoin.

Also reacting to the report is Prosper Mwedzi, a financial services lawyer and blockchain enthusiast. Mwedzi, who is cautiously optimistic about the plan, explains what the latest announcement means:

“I think it is positive that they are talking about it but they did say it is subject to regulatory clearance. At the moment the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) is doing a fintech policy but not a crypto policy.”

According to Mwedzi, exchanges are the jurisdiction of the Securities and Exchange Commission of Zimbabwe (SECZ), and “they have not said anything yet about how they view crypto.” He explains that Zimbabwe is yet to go the route taken by other African countries like Nigeria which recently classed cryptocurrencies as securities.

In 2018, the country’s central bank issued a notice advising Zimbabweans to steer clear of risky cryptocurrencies. During the same year, the central bank forced the closure of the country’s then-largest cryptocurrency exchange, Golix.

However, since late 2019, the central bank has been carefully issuing statements that appear to show a changed stance on cryptocurrencies and other emerging financial technologies. These statements however have not led to amendments or changes to the relevant regulations.

Still, Mwedzi suggests that the ZSE may have “kicked the ball in the court of SECZ and it now depends on whether they (SECZ) decide to be proactive or not.”

It remains to be seen if statements by the ZSE executive will nudge regulators into recognizing cryptocurrencies.

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  • I work in Global Finance out of Europe.
    When a Government behaves like Zanu PF under Robert Mugabe and cuts it’s own throat destroying it’s Agricultural Economy and then staggers around with blood gushing from it’s carotid artery begging for money We do not lend and We won’t deal with them. Especially as this was done for short term political gain.
    We don’t deal with Governments that tear up deeds of Title for the following two reasons.

    1. If they get away with it once, THEY WILL DO IT AGAIN !
    2. Same as above, If they get away with it once, THEY WILL DO IT AGAIN !

    No investment there, no matter what size will be safe under Zanu PF, they cannot be trusted.
    It is like a naughty petulant child who does not know about consequences !

    Zanu PF is an immature, unintelligent, primitive party and I feel very sorry for You Zimbabwe as You have 8000 000 now needing food aid and 96% unemployment and WE, the International Financiers are going to end up finding the money to feeding that 8000 000 people to avert a catastrophic famine because Zanu PF is simply too stupid to realise what is coming.
    I weep for You Zimbabwe, You deserve better than this .

  • Well said Prosper. That is certainly a step in the right direction. Blockchain and Crypto is the future.