Africa Quarterly Update Q2-2019
Events and learning initiatives
We launched an exciting thought-leadership series in partnership with Business Insider South Africa. Sharing thought-provoking articles on the future of money, podcasts covering the A-Z of cryptocurrency, and weekly news roundups from #LunoTV is just part of our push for crypto education.
Times Live education series
In our quest to continue educating people about Bitcoin, we partnered with TimesLIVE to share our educational content to a much wider audience. In this series, spanning over 12 weeks, we publish a new article each week. Check out our piece on Why is Bitcoin so volatile.
We hosted our very first Bitcoin Workshop at Workshop17 in Sandton. We took attendees through the fundamentals of Bitcoin, and the ins-and-outs of our platform. As Bitcoin is still a relatively new technology, the aim of these workshops is to provide people with the knowledge they need in order to feel empowered to safely interact with crypto.
Our second workshop focused on the future of money and current trends in the cryptocurrency market. Check out the video below.
Techpoint Inspired and Millennial Hangout Tech edition with Businessday
We participated in the biggest tech event in Nigeria, Techpoint Inspired 2019, where we led the discussion around cryptocurrency trading as the most prevalent use case for crypto in Nigeria. In addition to this, we also demonstrated how to securely trade through the Luno platform with ease.
We were also at the Businessday Millennial Hangout Tech edition alongside other business leaders, where we answered some great questions about cryptocurrencies and how to upgrade to a better financial system.
University Tour (Lagos campus event)
This quarter we also launched our campus outreach series starting with the University of Lagos. Aimed at educating the future of Nigeria, participating students got introduced to the future of money and how to participate in this new economy. The event was a good blend of fun and education, and we can’t wait to bring this initiative to more universities over the next two quarters.
PortHarcourt and Abuja meetups
We hosted cryptocurrency literacy workshops at the Bellanova Hotel, in the heart of Abuja, and at the Golden Tulip in PortHarcourt, the Rivers State capital, as part of our goal to reach all the geopolitical regions in Nigeria. The team introduced the basics of cryptocurrency and did a deep dive into our platform, and plans for future expansion. Our experts at the event taught the basics on how to trade cryptocurrencies through Luno.
The Financial Action Task Force (FATF), the inter-governmental body who sets the standards for combating money laundering, terrorist financing and other related threats adopted and issued an interpretative note to Recommendation 15 on New Technologies (INR. 15).
This interpretative note describes how countries and service providers must comply with its recommendations to prevent the misuse of cryptocurrencies for illicit purposes.
They also ssued the “Guidance For A Risk-Based Approach To Virtual Assets (VAs) and Virtual Assets Service Providers (VASPs)”, intended to help national authorities in understanding and developing regulatory and supervisory responses to VAs and VASPs, and private sector entities seeking to engage in virtual asset activities or operations in understanding their Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) obligations and how they can effectively comply with these requirements.
The FCA (Financial Conduct Authority) will issue guidance for crypto-assets in order to “provide regulatory clarity for market participants carrying on activities in this space”. The consultation process on the proposed guidance closed in April, with feedback and final word on the guidance expected in later this year.
Earlier this year the South African Reserve Bank, through its Intergovernmental Fintech Working Group, released its consultation paper on policy proposals for crypto assets. One of the main proposals is that cryptocurrency service providers must register with the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC) as accountable institutions. While this is a welcomed move, it wouldn’t affect us as we took a proactive approach in voluntarily registering as an accountable institution with the FIC in 2013.
The South African Reserve Bank is also warming up to the idea of a central bank digital currency, backed by the Rand, to use as electronic legal tender. The SARB issued a public note requesting solution providers to express interest in conducting a feasibility study on this project.