Africa is waking up. For many years, the potential of the continent’s youth has been growing. Now, as this talent pool blooms across Africa, the world is starting to take note. Combined with the revolutionary power blockchain provides, we are entering a golden age of African development.
With 226 million people aged, Africa has the youngest population in the world and, by is predicted to be the world’s largest, giving the continent an enviable and deep spread of talent which is soon set to be thrust onto the world stage.
To this generation of young, up-and-coming entrepreneurs, the idea of having to rely on systems of finance, government and technology built on the crumbling edifice of tradition belongs with the dinosaurs. They want to build their own destinies and future relying on their own skill and resources.
The on the continent means they have the opportunity to do just that. Research from Arcane Google Trend data showed African countries repeatedly rank in the top 10 on searches for the term “cryptocurrency.”
In sub-Saharan Africa alone, there are about , which accounts for 17% of the global unbanked population of two billion people.
For many Africans, being able to transact on an immutable, censorship-resistant and permissionless blockchain that cannot be affected by the hyperinflation often seen in African economies, is the first step towards achieving self-sovereignty over their finances.
Through blockchain people are able to build and access systems not previously available to them, for example micro lending platforms that can help new businesses to establish themselves.
The technology also has the potential to solve real-world practical issues such as identity management and land titling. Indeed the Global Partnership for Financial Inclusion (GPFI) wrote in its :
Blockchain technology can give those who are unbanked access to services that may have been unavailable to them. For example, through a decentralized app marketplace built on blockchain people will have access to new ways to save money, pay bills and other people, request loans, sell their own goods and services, and build their own tools to serve other niches in their community.
Rather than their finances being at risk of fluctuations in a hyper-inflated fiat currency, use of a stable digital asset means people can gain greater control of their finances and even complete custody over them, allowing them to opt out of a system that provides them with no benefits or security, into one that does.
Africans innovating with mobile technology long before the West, for example making . This characteristic of taking leaps forward in technology is what will drive the growth and success of digital assets on the continent, and we believe as Africa leads in this area, the rest of the world will be watching closely to see the developments it makes.