The Namibian government has changed its mind about regulating cryptocurrency exchanges rather than outright banning them.
On July 21, 2023, the Gazette of the Republic of Namibia published the law the Namibian government passed to oversee Virtual Asset Service Providers (VASPs). President Hage Geingob signed the legislation on July 14 after the National Assembly gave its approval on July 6.
The goal of the Namibia Virtual Assets Act 2023, the nation’s first draft of legislation to control activities related to cryptocurrencies, is to designate a regulatory body to oversee cryptocurrency exchanges in Namibia.
The law represents a significant advance in the regulation of cryptocurrencies in Namibia and is anticipated to contribute to consumer protection, the prevention of market abuse, and the reduction of the dangers associated with financial crime.
Namibia’s new cryptocurrency regulation law sets severe penalties for non-compliance. If a provider doesn’t register with the regulatory body, they risk 10 million Namibian dollars ($671,000) in fines and ten years in prison. Additionally, the Bank of Namibia has not changed its stance on whether or not cryptocurrencies will be accepted as legal tender in the nation.
Namibia’s reversal of its ban on cryptocurrency exchanges began in May 2018, when the Bank of Namibia revised its original decision.