Today, Joy Online reported that Ghana MP Ama Pomaa Boateng called on the parliament to codify regulations on cryptocurrencies and digital assets. The request comes on the heels of a report which noted that, in 2018 alone, more than 100,000 investors in the country lost a combined total of more than $25 million due to unscrupulous actors.
“There’s no question that losses due to scams and hacks are unacceptable. Boateng is right to call for regulation, both within Ghana and abroad. While many in the country cautioned against unlicensed and unregulated digital assets, we find that Boateng has struck the right tone,” said Richard Gardner, CEO of Modulus, a US-based developer of ultra-high-performance exchange technology. “She recognizes that the industry can no longer serve as the Wild West of Finance.
Bureaucrats and politicians must rein in the industry and hold all participants to a standard that protects investors from fraud and other forms of malfeasance. Yet, at the same time, Boateng understands that blockchain technologies are a game changer. She doesn’t want to kill the industry. She wants Ghana to pioneer the kinds of reforms necessary to make the industry stronger.”
“The rise in the use of cryptocurrency in Ghana demands urgent attention because the legislature needs to interrogate the impact and the future of the digital currency on the economy,” Boateng was reported as saying.
“While the Bank of Ghana and other bureaucrats and politicians have warned against investing in digital assets altogether, Boateng understands that the cutting-edge technology represents a vibrant new future in finance. She understands that it could fundamentally transform the country’s economy. You don’t want to throw the baby out with the bathwater here. It is critical to protect investors from bad actors while still fostering industry growth,” noted Gardner.
Currently, industry players are not licensed under the country’s Payments System Act 2003 (Act 662), and only those institutions which are licensed fall under the BOG’s regulatory scope.
“It is, most certainly, important for governments to license and regulate cryptocurrency exchanges. There needs to be a standard of excellence, especially as it relates to cybersecurity. Exchanges need to do right by their clients and invest in the technology necessary to stop cybercriminals in their tracks.
To accomplish this, government needs to work together with the private sector to write a rulebook that makes sense. I welcome Ms. Boateng to reach out to us at any time. We would be more than happy to work with her to help develop the kinds of regulations which will keep investors safe while encouraging investment in Ghana,” said Gardner.
Modulus is known throughout the financial technology segment as a leader in the development of ultra-high frequency trading systems and exchanges. Over the past twenty years, the company has built a client list which includes Goldman Sachs, Merrill Lynch, JP Morgan Chase, Bank of America, Barclays, NASA, Siemens, Shell, Yahoo!, Microsoft, Cornell University, and University of Chicago.