The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of Nigeria has revealed that talks are underway with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) regarding the regulation of cryptocurrencies. The securities regulator also reiterated that due to a CBN guideline issued on February 7, 2021, the crypto guidelines it issued in September 2020 will remain suspended.
Crypto guidelines set aside
However, the regulator promises that when concluding its commitments with the CBN, stakeholders will be informed of the outcome. Meanwhile, Lamido Yuguda, SEC’s director general, in his comments made at a virtual Capital Market Committee (CMC) conference in the first quarter, is trying to justify the regulator’s decision to suspend its own guidelines. He said:
Due to the lack of access to commercial bank accounts, we had to suspend our own September 2020 guidelines, the implementation of that circular will be suspended until these operators can access Nigerian bank accounts.
He adds that this was the only logical step to take as no one can operate “in the Nigerian capital market if they don’t have access to a Nigerian bank account.”
Support for all fintechs
Still, Yuguda claims the SEC “strongly supports fintechs” after the regulator “invested so much in developing a framework to support fintechs in the various areas.” He also adds:
Nothing has changed in all other areas, but in the field of crypto assets, you know that with the recent ban by the CBN on crypto exchanges’ access to Nigerian bank accounts, that market has been disrupted.
As reported by Bitcoin.com News, the CBN has issued a directive that prohibits banks from facilitating transactions involving crypto entities. The CBN guideline seemed to contradict an earlier SEC circular that apparently endorsed cryptocurrencies. The ensuing confusion soon forced the SEC to abandon its crypto guidelines and show support for the CBN’s decision.
In his latest comments, however, Yuguda tries to reassure the crypto industry by stating that the regulator “will continue to engage and support players to operate legally.” Ultimately, the SEC says it wants to “ensure the delivery of safe products and services without stifling innovation.”
Do you think the SEC will be able to convince the CBN to go back? Tell us what you think in the comments section below.
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