Zambia's Central Bank to Explore CBDC Following Crypto Warning: Report

The Bank of Zambia wants to cut transaction costs and increase citizens' participation in the formal financial system.

AccessTimeIconFeb 9, 2022 at 3:42 p.m. UTC
Updated May 11, 2023 at 6:36 p.m. UTC

Zambia, in common with several neighboring countries, is exploring a potential central bank digital currency (CBDC) and expects to complete its research later this year, according to a Bloomberg report Wednesday.

The Bank of Zambia aims to cut transaction costs and increase citizens' participation in the formal financial system, Bloomberg said.

The news follows shortly after the central bank issued a warning on the use of cryptocurrencies, saying “people who want to deal in them should have a clear understanding of all the risks that come with such payment and investment instruments,” according to Bloomberg.

This strongly echoes the rhetoric of the central bank in Zambia's neighbor to the south, Zimbabwe. "As a central bank we don't believe in cryptocurrencies," Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor John Mangudya said in December. Zimbabwe is also exploring the development of a CBDC and plans to send a team to research the experience of Nigeria, where one was launched in October.

Some 100 countries are researching the possibilities of developing a CBDC, International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva said in a speech today.

The motivation is in part out of concern that they will see demand for their fiat currencies drop should citizens use CBDCs from other countries or, indeed, a private cryptocurrency. Developing nations with often unstable fiat currencies are more prone to this risk than most, hence the widespread interest in developing CBDCs.


Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that covers the cryptocurrency industry. Its journalists abide by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by the Bullish group, owner of Bullish, a regulated, digital assets exchange. The Bullish group is majority-owned by; both companies have interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets, including bitcoin. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary with an editorial committee to protect journalistic independence. CoinDesk employees, including journalists, may receive options in the Bullish group as part of their compensation.

Jamie Crawley

Jamie Crawley is a CoinDesk news reporter based in London.

Read more about