Sango crypto hub goes live in the Central African Republic

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The Central African Republic (CAR) has launched its new government-backed Sango Crypto Hub initiative to fuel the growth of the local digital asset sector.

The Sango project follows the adoption of bitcoin (BTC) by CAR as legal tender in April. The initiative aims to attract businesses and global crypto talent/enthusiasts, promote local BTC adoption, and oversee the rollout of the crypto regulatory framework and infrastructure. A metaverse platform called “The Crypto Island” and Sango Coin are also in the works.

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Speaking at the launch event on July 3, President Faustin-Archange Toudera outlined Sango’s vision for a “common cryptocurrency and a unified capital market that can stimulate commerce and sustain growth.”

One of the key points President Toudera emphasized was the importance of financial inclusion and citizens being able to easily access crypto via a smartphone. He compared the CAR with the under-utilized banking sector, which has several barriers to entry:

“Citizens will benefit at every level, they will live in a country with full economic growth, which means employment and prosperity. In addition, they will benefit from virtual transactions, which, unlike traditional banking, have faster access, faster execution, bureaucratic has the advantage of scarcity and low cost.

“This technology will give a identity to the continent by reducing costs. This vision is perfect, and we don’t have time to wait. […] For us the formal economy is no longer an option.

Despite the CAR president’s bullishness for the project, the World Bank said in May that it would not “support Sango” over transparency concerns and “potential impacts of financial inclusion”.

Sango is supported by the National Assembly of the CAR and is primarily administered by President Toudera. While many of the specifications are yet to be detailed, an important focus of the project will be to characterize the country’s abundant natural resources for greater investment access to them.

Citizen identification and property ownership will also be marked as NFTs. Additionally, Crypto Island will play an important role in facilitating this ecosystem and will serve as a way for verified users to gain access to tokenized assets.

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Expanded bitcoin support will also see the development of local wallets built for BTC and the Lighting Network.