Kenya’s Capital Markets Authority (CMA) says the country needs a more encompassing approach that enables it to leverage other regulators’ expertise when testing crypto assets.
Kenyan Crypto Interest
Also, the Kenyan body, which favours a joint financial sector regulatory sandbox, says it is keen to forge “a common stance and joint-messaging with the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK)” when it comes to cryptos.
The CMA’s latest commentary on cryptocurrencies follows the release of the Capital Markets Soundness report of Q1, 2021. According to the quarterly report, which itself relies on the Chainalysis 2020 Geography of Cryptocurrency Report, Kenya “is the top 5 in global crypto-trading activity.” The country’s interest in cryptos is also reaffirmed by a Blockchainnenter.net report which places Kenya’s bitcoin search interest at 94.7%.
Investor Protection Mandate
Yet, despite this acknowledgment of crypto assets’ growing popularity, the Kenyan regulator insists it still has an investor protection mandate to uphold. Concerning its position on this, the regulator says:
This an area of keen interest to the Authority given its investor protection mandate also given the prevalence of scams on this front.
While the CMA concedes that many Kenyans consider cryptocurrencies “an alternative investment class”, it nevertheless insists that such digital assets are now an “area of interest” since they will likely “impact the soundness of Kenya’s capital market.”
With this latest report, the CMA becomes the latest African regulatory body to reiterate an earlier position on crypto assets. Another African regulator to recently restate its stance on cryptocurrencies is Ghana’s Securities and Exchange Commission. As reported by Bitcoin.com News, this regulator wants Ghanaians to stay away from cryptocurrencies. Similarly, Nigerian regulators have issued several statements warning residents of the risks of trading in cryptocurrencies.