The Federal Government of Nigeria has held preliminary with the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange – Binance – to jointly create a digital economic zone that is aimed at improving blockchain technology adoption while supporting cryptocurrency and blockchain-based businesses.

The Nigeria Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA) revealed the ongoing talks on 2nd September 2022 via their Twitter channel. According to the tweet, Nigeria has held preliminary talks with Binance and infrastructure firm – Talent City – to discussed the proposed digital economic city that will be a virtual free zone.

The early-stage plans were discussed in a meeting between NEPZA Managing Director – Adesoji Adesugba, Binance Executive Director – Regional Strategic Partnerships, Binance Legal Counsel – Sameera Kimatrai Nadeem Ladki, Talent City CEO – Luqman Edu and another NEPZA Director – Sikiru Lawal on Friday, 2nd September in Dubai.

NEPZA Managing Director – Adesoji Adesugba spoke to the press after the meeting and said that the proposed virtual free zone will be the first in West Africa and will have similar properties to Dubai’s virtual zones. These zones are designed to provide cryptocurrency-friendly laws, regulations, structures and juicy tax incentives for cryptocurrency and blockchain-based startups and businesses.

With Nigeria having one of the highest global rates of cryptocurrency adoption with over 22 million owners of digital assets according to Triple A, Adesugba said the zone will help in speeding up the development of Nigeria’s digital economy while creating more employment opportunities for Nigerian citizens. He added that the move is part of Nigeria’s economic development agenda with the long-term goal of driving cryptocurrency adoption in the West African country.

CoinGecko’s recent survey found Nigerian residents to be the most crypto-curious people on earth because they searched the terms “cryptocurrency” and “buy crypto’ more than any of the other countries surveyed. Nigeria also launched her first Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) called the “eNaira” in October 2021. The project is currently in its second phase and is aiming to drive financial inclusion by onboarding Nigeria’s unbanked citizens.

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