Bank of Uganda Regulatory Alert on Crypto

Bank of Uganda issues a circular to all payments licensees to desist from facilitating cryptocurrency transactions

By Staff

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In 2017, the Bank of Uganda issued a press release that was circulated in the media, warning the general public about “One-coin Digital Money’ operations in Uganda. The statement by the Central Bank Governor, warned that one coin’s dealings in cryptocurrency like Bitcoin, fall outside the regulatory purview of the Central Bank.

The Government of Uganda has rejected the idea of cryptocurrencies yet again with the Central Bank issuing a circular to all payments licensees to desist from facilitating cryptocurrency transactions. The Circular specifically cites the conversion of Crypto to Mobile Money as one of the prohibited transactions. 

Bank of Uganda has released a statement noting that there have been press reports and adverts advising the public that they can convert cryptocurrencies into mobile money and vice versa, without the participation of the Payment Service Providers and Payment System Operators. The Central Bank emphasizes that it has not licensed any institution to facilitate any crypto trades.

Most Ugandans however are in disagreement with this regulation stating that this could be a sign of the developing nation not catching up fast to the digital trends. 

Others share that the Central Bank needs to understand how crypto can work in the market while being regulated instead of blocking it.

The Central Bank emphasizes that it does not recognize any cryptocurrency as legal tender and reminds Ugandans of the risks involved in crypto trading. 

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