Egypt Warms Up To Cryptocurrency, Lifts Ban to Allow Licensed Companies

The government of Egypt might be stepping up to embrace cryptocurrency by loosening the restrictions employed over them, as reported by the Middle East News Agency, the Egypt Independent.

A source close to the matter disclosed that a bill is proposed that will ban the creation, trading, or promotion of cryptocurrencies without a license as compared to the outright ban of all cryptocurrencies under Islamic law.

In early 2018, Shawki Allam, the current Grand Mufti of Egypt, issued a ban on cryptos, stating that the digital assets could undermine the legal system via tax evasion and other fraudulent activities such as money laundering. At the time, he also showed concern over the volatility and scams involved in the ecosystem.

What changed now?

As the cryptocurrency ecosystem is expanding its outreach and the neighboring countries have started exploring the use cases of the technology, the Egyptian government is softening its stance.

As per the publication, the new bill will enable the board of directors of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) to regulate cryptocurrencies and require, multiple potentially expensive licenses to do business. The report reads:

The new law provides legal authority for the electronic authentication of bank transactions, electronic payment orders, and transfer orders as well as for the electronic settlement of checks and the issuance and circulation of electronic checks and electronic discount orders, provided that Board of Directors of CBE issue rules and procedures regulating all the aforementioned actions.

Cryptocurrency legalization has been discussed for years in Egypt, this moves just brings the possibility of it closer to reality. Notably, the draft bill isn’t available for public reading as of yet.

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