Uganda Minister of Finance Warns Against Crypto; They Aren’t Licensed Here And You Own 100% Of Risk

Africa is a strange place. It is a place of third-world culture and first world innovations all coming together in a weird melting pot. Relatively recently, this melting pot added cryptocurrencies to the mix. Uganda’s Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development and the Central Bank released a statement where they discouraged the use of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.

Matia Kasaija, Minister of Finance, Planning and Economic Development, addressed the media in Kampala. He stated that Uganda’s government had taken note of the emerging trend of Ugandans using cryptocurrencies to do business within the country.

He stated that the country of Uganda does not recognize any form of cryptocurrency. They have neither licensed nor regulated any form of it, and the implication being that the Ugandan government will not show any support to the new way of cryptocurrency.

Kasaija explained that many forms of cryptocurrency aren’t based on any physical assets, meaning there’s no way to ensure the price stays stable. With the lack of government support, Kasaija explains that Ugandans have no consumer protection if a cryptocurrency suddenly drops in value. This extends to organizations making use of cryptocurrencies. If they fail to deliver whatever service or product they offered, there is no way to obtain your money back after you had paid them. 

The unregulated, anonymous nature of Bitcoins attract various criminal elements to use it as a go-to currency. The myth that its transactions are untrackable is just that: a myth. However, there is very little information to be gained from account keys, so it’s still a popular choice among criminal elements.

Kasaija urges Ugandans to take caution when using cryptocurrencies. He recommends considering the risks, lack of government support, and the sheer volatility of the cryptocurrency format before partaking in practice.

The Facts

It’s no secret that cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin are highly volatile, jumping $100 up one day, then back down the other. It’s a high risk, high reward asset for those who plan on investing in Bitcoin to later sell for a profit.

Uganda is one of almost a hundred countries worldwide that warn against cryptocurrency usage. However, the fact that they advise against it isn’t all that surprising.

The act of using something other than official currency to buy products and services is one that has been going on for centuries. In the criminal world, you could just as quickly be paid in cash as you could be paid in drugs or if we’re being dramatic, firearms.

When the Americas were being colonized, it was common practice to use things like rum as a currency, a few budding countries actually verifying Jamaican rum as a currency in those early days.

The fact of the matter is, a significant facet of the people of Uganda felt the need to do transactions in cryptocurrency instead of the Ugandan Shilling. For the general safety of everyone involved in cryptocurrency, please be aware that the decentralized nature of things like Bitcoin makes it incredibly difficult to regulate.

Like drugs, if someone cheated you on a deal involving Bitcoin, you can’t exactly go to the police.

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