Kenya | 2022

Digital currency adoption in Kenya in 2022

10.71

%

of Kenyans
own digital currency

How many digital currencies owners in Kenya?

It is estimated that 6.1 million people, 10.71% of Kenya’s total population, currently own digital currency.

State of digital currencies in Kenya

As of 2022, Kenya remains one of the three largest Bitcoin markets in the African continent, standing alongside digital currencies giants such as Nigeria and South Africa. They continue to be among the leading adopters of digital currency as they remain in the top 20 in Chainalysis’s 2022 Global Digital currency Adoption Index Report. Kenya’s huge market share in Bitcoin was reflected in statistics reported by

LocalBitcoins, a firm that facilitates over-the-counter trading of local currencies for Bitcoins. The trading platform revealed that Kenya hit record-high numbers in terms of trading volume of digital currencies on P2P transactions. LocalBitcoin’s Head of Business Development, Vladislav Alimpev, stated that “The record trading volume in Kenya was achieved during the second week of January 2021 when as much as KES 150 million worth of Bitcoin was traded on our platform, which amounts to $1.3million. $1.3million puts Kenya in the top echelon of the countries on LocalBitcoins by trading volume. Only a handful of countries have ever broken that $1 million a week barrier”. Similar to many of their African counterparts, many continue to adopt digital currencies as their main form of assets as a way to preserve their purchasing power in face of their local currency devaluation. According to a UN survey about the digital currencies climate within Africa, Kenya has the highest proportion of its people holding digital currencies within the African continent.

Nonetheless, Kenya’s enthusiasm for digital currencies did not fall on deaf ears as the Central Bank of Kenya made the decision to adopt digital currencies as its reserve currency, in an attempt to tackle the rising financial crisis in the nation. Furthermore, the Kenyan government is putting in measures to innovate its financial sector. In their recent Vision 2030 proposal, the Kenyan Ministry of ICT is developing the National Payments Vision and Strategy, with one of its main priorities being regulation and security for digital payments.

Kenya digital currencies ownership demographics

According to a survey conducted by Finders, it is reported that 60% of its digital currencies owners are male, following the global trend whereby countries tend to have more men owning digital currencies compared to their female counterparts. In terms of ownership across different age groups, Kenya sees an evenly distributed demographic with both 18-34 year-olds and 55+-year-olds making up 36% each.

Digital currencies's rising popularity in Kenya

  • Kenya’s Digital currencies Crowd Hopes President-Elect Will Be Better Than Predecessor – August 2022
    Amidst the recent presidential election in Kenya, Kenya’s digital currencies community holds high hopes for the new incumbent president, William Ruto, with regard to the country’s digital currencies future. Ever since the cautionary notice on digital currencies issued by the central bank in 2018, the country has seen no legislative process when it comes to regulating digital currencies, keeping the digital currencies community in a grey area. However, with a younger president, digital currencies-enthusiast Kenyans is optimistic about the future of digital currencies in their country.
  • Over 4 million Kenyans own digital currencies, highest share in Africa – July 2022
    A United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) report suggests that Kenya has the largest share of its population with digital currencies in Africa, putting it ahead of developed economies such as the United States. The report attributed this increase in digital currencies adoption to low fees charged by digital currencies-centralised exchanges, quick and safer transactions and a hedge against the depreciating local currency.

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