Report: Nigerian SEC Plans Meetings with Foreign Crypto Exchanges Amid Regulatory Crackdown

According to a recent report from CoinTelegraph, the Nigerian Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is scheduled to convene meetings with various cryptocurrency exchanges. The objective of these discussions is to delve into the current landscape of crypto regulation within the African nation. This development follows closely on the heels of significant regulatory actions undertaken by Nigerian authorities. Notably, the country recently detained two high-ranking executives from Binance, a prominent cryptocurrency exchange. The charges leveled against these individuals include allegations of money laundering and tax evasion. These events underscore the growing regulatory scrutiny faced by cryptocurrency platforms operating within Nigeria’s jurisdiction.

Nigerian SEC Plans Talks with Crypto Exchanges Regarding Cryptocurrency Regulation

In a recent interview with CoinTelegraph, Lucky Uwakwe, Chair of Nigeria’s Blockchain Industry Coordinating Committee (BICCoN), shed light on the forthcoming meeting between the Nigerian Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and cryptocurrency exchanges. The primary agenda of this meeting is to address the prevailing regulatory concerns within Nigeria’s cryptocurrency sector.

Under the leadership of Emomotimi Agama, the newly appointed Director General of the Nigerian SEC, the meeting is scheduled for May 6. It is expected to bring together key stakeholders from Nigeria’s crypto industry, including virtual asset service providers (VASPs), wallet providers, and crypto exchange platforms. This inclusive approach underscores the SEC’s commitment to engaging with various players in the cryptocurrency ecosystem to ensure comprehensive and effective regulation.

Uwakwe conveyed to CoinTelegraph, “The participation and perspectives of all attendees are highly valued as we collaboratively navigate the regulatory landscape, endeavoring to create a supportive environment for innovation and advancement within the blockchain and cryptocurrency industry.”

Amidst the ongoing crackdown on cryptocurrencies, Binance executives continue to be held in detention.

The announcement of the meeting coincides with challenging economic conditions in the country, particularly regarding cryptocurrencies.

In February, reports emerged that Nigeria’s government had prohibited its citizens from accessing numerous crypto exchanges. This move was largely seen as an accusation against Binance, alleging that the exchange was manipulating the exchange rate of the country’s currency, the naira.

Olayemi Cardoso, the Governor of the Nigerian Central Bank, levied accusations against Binance, claiming that the exchange had facilitated the movement of approximately $26 billion in illicit funds through its Nigerian operations in the previous year.

“We are troubled by certain activities that suggest illicit financial flows through various entities, with suspicious transactions being prevalent,” Cardoso remarked. “In the instance of Binance, an estimated $26 billion has been funneled through Binance Nigeria from sources and users whose identities we cannot sufficiently ascertain.”

During the same period, the nation apprehended two Binance executives, Nadeem Anjarwalla and Tigran Gambaryan, subsequently charging them with offenses including money laundering and tax evasion.

Anjarwalla was apprehended just over a week ago in Kenya, nearly 3,000 miles away, following his attempt to evade arrest shortly after the initial incident.

By March, the nation demanded $10 billion in reparations from the cryptocurrency exchange, prompting Binance to cease all operations within the African country.

In recent weeks, Nigeria witnessed a surge in its inflation rate, reaching a nearly three-decade high of 33%, with the government attributing the economic downturn to cryptocurrencies.

In the meantime, the trial for money laundering involving Anjarwalla and Gambaryan has been postponed to May 17 by a Nigerian court. This decision came after a Binance attorney argued that crucial proof-of-evidence documents required for the defense were not provided.

As uncertainties persist regarding the validity of the arrests, the nation’s stringent crackdown on cryptocurrencies may have dire consequences for the two detained Binance executives.

The forthcoming meeting between the Nigerian SEC and cryptocurrency stakeholders scheduled for next week could offer valuable insights into the trajectory of the country’s cryptocurrency regulations.

READ MORE ABOUT: Nigeria focuses on obtaining user data from Binance as part of its efforts to crack down on cryptocurrency activities.

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