The Central African Republic (CAR) has begun to unveil its digital currency-focused initiatives. The country’s president, Faustin-Archange Touadera, has announced the country’s first “crypto initiative” called Sango.
The initiative is named after the country’s second official language and has the backing of the National Assembly. In a statement shared on the CAR’s official Facebook account, the president highlighted that the initiative goes beyond politics and administration and has the potential to transform the country’s financial system.
“The construction of the first legal crypto hub in the heart of Africa will improve crypto experience by taking Bitcoin adoption to the next level, potentially bringing the most unconventional space in the world,”
the statement reads.
Adding that the adoption of Bitcoin and digital currencies can usher in a new economic era with enormous potential. Project Sango aims to make this happen by making digital currencies accessible to all.
According to a 24-page presentation for the initiative, Sango will be a ‘crypto’ island where digital currency trading will have legal recognition—the first of its kind in Africa.
The presentation informs that the legal framework for implementing this is already being worked on and will be ready before the end of the year. Specific provisions in the framework include zero percent corporate tax, citizenship by investment, digital ownership and identity, online business registration, and an e-residency program.
It also includes laws for tokenization and crowdfunding. The country is throwing in incentives for digital currency firms to troop in by affirming that it will support access to natural resources such as gold, diamonds, and uranium. A new body, the Digital National Bank (BNDRC), will oversee the industry.
CAR ignoring concerned observers
The initiative is coming just after the CAR adopted Bitcoin as legal tender last month. This makes them only the second country to do so in the world after El Salvador, and the first in Africa.
According to a Reuters report, observers have been raising many questions about the move. These include why a poor country with low internet usage and unreliable electricity will adopt BTC as legal tender.
The IMF and the Banking Commission of Central Africa (COBAC) are among the country’s critics. The latter, which is the regional banking industry regulator of Central Africa, said that member countries should be reminded of the ban on digital currencies. CAR officials responded that the country maintains its right to sovereignty.