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Less than 0.5% Nigerians have used the country’s CBDC e-Naira a year after its launch

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Nigeria’s Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) e-Naira is failing because of low adoption rates while the government is trying to drive adoption higher, Bloomberg News reported.

The E-Naira was launched in October 2021 and has been live for 14 months as of December but the adoption rate remains low.

Current numbers indicate that only one in 200 people are using the e-Naira, which equates to less than 0.5% of the population. Within the first eight months after its launch, only 700,000 users created an e-Naira wallet.

According to the report, the government is trying to drive adoption by offering a 5% discount on e-Naira payments in Keke Napep, the country’s most widely used transportation system.

Talking about the desired future of the e-Naira, Nigeria’s Central Bank Governor Godwin Emefiele said:

“The destination, as far as I am concerned, is to achieve a 100% cashless economy in Nigeria,”

Meanwhile, the country’s central bank has taken a hands-off approach toward crypto. Nigerian financial institutions are banned from creating and managing crypto-related accounts but trading and owning crypto remains legal in the country.

However, in a recent turn of events, the Nigerian Securities and Exchange Commission said on Dec. 19 that it is set to recognize crypto as an investment class.

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