- The digital economic zone will be the first virtual free zone in West Africa.
- It will help Nigerian entrepreneurs fast-track their adoption of blockchain technology.
- It would also enable Nigeria to diversify its oil-dependent economy.
Talks are underway between the Nigerian government, Binance Holdings Limited and Talent City over a planned establishment of a digital economic zone in the country.
This is according to a statement by the Nigeria Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA), a government agency that licences, regulates and operates free trade zones.
Part of the statement by NEPZA noted that when completed, the digital economic zone would be “the first Virtual Free Zone in West Africa similar to the Dubai Virtual Free Zone”.
Business Insider Africa understands that the aim of the digital economic zone, otherwise known as the ‘digital city’ is to help Nigerian tech entrepreneurs fast-track their adoption of blockchain technology.
The partnership would also help Nigeria’s bid to diversify its oil-dependent economy by leveraging digital technology. A diversified [digital] economy would benefit the country which has a boisterous youthful tech-savvy population.
As you may know, Nigerians love cryptocurrencies. Alongside Kenya, South Africa and Tanzania, Nigeria has one of the highest cryptocurrency adoption rates, according to Chainanalysis.
Although cryptocurrencies are banned in the country, Nigeria still values the importance of blockchain technology and earlier this year launched a digital currency, becoming the first in Africa to do so.
Asides from that, Nigerian tech companies are increasingly adopting the technology due to its immense benefits in the digital age.
In June this year, the Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Exchange Limited, Temi Popoola, told Bloomberg that the bourse intends to launch a blockchain-enabled platform in 2023 as part of a broad plan to attract younger investor and expand its reach.