Tunisian crypto trading volume and exchange sign-ups increased gradually the first half of the year. All of this happening despite prohibitive banking laws and currency regulations.
Tunisian user registrations on U.K.-based cryptocurrency exchange CEX.IO rose 11% in the first 4 months of 2021 compared to the same period of the previous year.
According to the firm’s CEO, Konstantin Anissimov, bitcoin trading volumes in Tunisia on CEX.IO were also up more than 10% from December to April 2021, reflecting trends seen by other crypto platforms worldwide. CEX.IO is a regulated cryptocurrency exchange with over 3 million users worldwide, according to its website.
“For Tunisia, the use of Bitcoin on our exchange for everyday purchases is not yet a reality but new user registrations are increasing constantly,” Anissimov told Carthage Magazine.
For peer-to-peer crypto trading platforms such as Paxful, the rise was also gradual. Public trading data shows volume on the platforms rose relatively steadily through 2020. On Paxful, new user registrations and trading volumes were up 20% between 2019 and 2020 in Tunisia, according to the firm’s Chief Growth Officer, Jan Strandberg.
Tunisia’s central bank continues to take a cautious approach due to the “speculative nature” of cryptocurrencies. It is worth noting that using Bitcoin is a bit controversial. Quite similar to some other regional countries, the country’s central bank has effectively issued a warning to investors. In this warning, the bank confirms this form of investment is not protected by their guidelines and investors are at risk of losing a lot of money.
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The Central Bank of Tunisia has yet to issue a crypto licensing framework or guidelines. Nonetheless, in late April, local media reported authorities had arrested a young Tunisian man for owning of virtual digital currencies.
“There are no easy ways of purchasing crypto in Tunisia. So any volumes that we see of people buying Bitcoin is even more memorable given how difficult it is to acquire it,” H.A, Tunisian Entrepreneur
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