Egyptian Regulators Kill Rumor Domestic Banks Might Handle Bitcoin

Egypt's central bank recently shot down rumors that it would allow banks in the country to handle cryptocurrencies like bitcoin.

Jul 14, 2017 at 7:15 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 11, 2021 at 1:32 p.m. UTC

Egypt's central bank recently shot down rumors that may move to allow banks in the country to handle cryptocurrencies like bitcoin.

Those rumors first appeared on social media, according to reports, prompting the Central Bank of Egypt, through deputy governor Gamal Negm, to deny them.

"For stability of the Egyptian banking system, the banks deal with the official currencies only, and never deal with any virtual currencies," Negm told Egyptian economics magazine Amwal Al Ghad last month. Washington, DC-based publication Al-Monitor, which covers Egyptian news, reported on the situation yesterday.

It's a development that comes as more countries weigh legal frameworks to establish some kind of standing for the technology under domestic law.

To date, Japan has emerged as an early adopter of new rules that establish bitcoin as a kind of legal payment method, though countries like India and Russia, among others, have been pursuing such frameworks.

Egypt's, like other parts of the region, has a nascent cryptocurrency market, serviced by startups such as BitOasis as well as local exchangers, according to LocalBitcoins.

Egypt flag image via Shutterstock

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