Crypto

MENA Region Emerges as World’s Fastest Growing Crypto Adopter – Study

DUBAI, Oct 5 (Reuters) – The Middle East and North Africa are the fastest growing cryptocurrency markets in the world, with the volume of crypto received in the region jumping 48% over the year through June, blockchain researcher Chainalysis said in a report on Wednesday. .

While the MENA region is one of the smallest crypto markets, its growth to $566 billion received in cryptocurrency between July 2021 and June 2022 shows that adoption is growing rapidly.

Source: Chain Analysis

Latin America saw the second highest growth over the same period, at 40%. North America was next with 36% growth, closely followed by Central and South Asia and Oceania with 35% growth, Chainalysis said.

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Three MENA countries feature in the top 30 of Chainalysis’ 2022 Global Crypto Adoption Index, with Turkey at 12th, Egypt at 14th, and Morocco at 24th.

“In Turkey and Egypt, fluctuating cryptocurrency prices coincided with rapid devaluations of fiat (traditional) currencies, increasing the appeal of crypto for savings preservation,” Chainalysis said.

The Turkish lira has weakened nearly 30% this year to new record highs, having lost 44% of its value last year amid a currency crisis triggered by rate cuts.

Turkey leads the MENA region by far in terms of received crypto value, having received $192 billion worth of crypto in the year to the end of June, although it has only seen growth of 10.5% year over year.

The Egyptian currency also lost around a quarter of its value against the dollar at the start of the year.

“Remittance payments account for about 8% of Egypt’s GDP, and the country’s national bank has already launched a project to build a crypto-based remittance corridor between Egypt and the Emirates. Arab States, where many native Egyptians work,” Chainalysis said.

The six countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council “rarely reach the top of our Core Crypto Adoption Index because it weighs countries based on purchasing power parity per capita, which favors countries with the lowest numbers.” poorer,” Chainalysis said.

Source: Chain Analysis

“Nevertheless, their role in the crypto ecosystem should not be underestimated. Saudi Arabia, for example, is the third largest crypto market in the entire MENA region, and the United Arab Emirates is the fifth.”

Afghanistan, which was 20th in Chainalysis’ adoption index last year, fell to the bottom of the list as Taliban authorities “equated cryptography with gambling”, which is forbidden in Islam, said Chainalysis.

From November 2021 to present, users based in Afghanistan have received less than $80,000 in crypto per month on average, compared to an average of $68 million per month before the Taliban takeover, Chainalysis said.

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Reporting by Yousef Saba. Editing by Jane Merriman

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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