The President of the Zimbabwe Blockchain Institute (ZBI), Prince Sibanda has stated that the recent ban of Cryptocurrency in the southern African country by the Central Bank is counterproductive and uncalled for. Speaking to Cryptodolfin in the city of Bulawayo on Saturday, he insisted strenuously the move will annihilate innovation and financial freedom.
“The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) is bereft of ideas and just like they destroyed the Zimbabwean dollar with hyperinflation their choice to ban cryptocurrency will kill the innovation Blockchain is offering this country,” Sibanda stressed.
In his judgment, the decision will only compound the ongoing monetary crisis that has crippled the Zimbabwean economy for more than a decade. He queried why a country without its own currency can ban such financial innovation like Cryptocurrency.
Zimbabwe Cryptocurrency Ban
In May the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) issued a circular banning Cryptocurrency Exchanges and closing their bank accounts. The Central Bank believes Cryptocurrency poses an immense threat to the Zimbabwean public. Golix, the leading Crypto Exchange, therefore, filed a suit at a Harare High court requesting the ban to be lifted. Even though the court granted the plaintiff an interim relief, the banks are yet to comply with allowing the exchanges access to their bank accounts.
“RBZ’s ban of Cryptocurrencies is not offensive as the reason behind it,” Sibanda declared. “Our Central Bank poses a greater risk to the people of this country more than any institution, in fact, they have done more harm to us already.
Hindering Cross-Border Trade
The shortage of foreign currency and the absence of a national currency in Zimbabwe has made it quite difficult for a successful and hassle free cross-border trade and transaction for years now. However, Cryptocurrencies has been filling this huge gap.
“Now all those businesses and individuals who have been importing goods like automobile and groceries from Japan and South Africa using Bitcoin can’t do that anymore,” the leader of the Blockchain Public policy think tank interjected.According to Sibanda, what is so debilitating is that there is no other option left for Zimbabweans since RBZ cannot maintain a currency of their own. He believe the former has no moral authority to ban Cryptocurrency.
Threat To FDI
Also, the ZBI president thinks the ban comes to intensify investors distrust for Zimbabwe as an investment destination. Many companies have relocated from that country because of government interference in the market in the past decades.
“Zimbabwe was on the path of attracting Foreign Direct Investment in the Blockchain space because of the way Cryptocurrency was gaining roots here until the RBZ halted it,” he elaborated. Demand for Bitcoin in Zimbabwe prior to the ban was overwhelming as Bitcoin price was 40 per cent higher than the international market price.
Interestingly, Sibanda pointed out that the ban comes as a result of the Central Banks desire to control the financial system and keep manipulating the populace. “After destroying our wealth through the reckless printing of money, they are scared to see us using a financial system they can’t control and manipulate like fiat,” he announced.