Nigeria’s markets regulator publishes set of rules for digital assets

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Nigeria's markets regulator has published 54 pages of regulations for digital assets, as the country may be stepping back from an earlier ban on cryptocurrencies.

Last February, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) issued a letter telling regulated financial institutions in the country to "immediately" close accounts connected to cryptocurrency-related activities, The Block reported at the time.

Still, Nigeria’s young, tech-savvy population has eagerly adopted cryptocurrencies, often using peer-to-peer trading offered by crypto exchanges to avoid the ban, Reuters noted today.

Nigeria's Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) published the "New Rules on Issuance, Offering Platforms and Custody of Digital Assets" as a document on its website.

It spells out rules for issuing digital assets and classifies them as securities to be regulated by the SEC. It also includes registration requirements for digital asset offerings and custodians, as well as rules for digital asset exchanges.

The regulations may “act as the precursor for a surprise move from the central bank to reverse its approach, providing critical foundations for mass crypto adoption across the country,” Owen Odia, country manager for Nigeria at cryptocurrency exchange Luno, told Bloomberg by email.

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