In 2021Morocco was ranked 24th worldwide cybercurrency useraccording to the Global Cryptocurrency Adoption Index compiled by chain analysisa platform providing data related to the blockchainthe technological engine of cryptocurrency.
According to a 2021 study by the crypto payments company Triple-Athe Kingdom recorded a bitcoin trading volume (one of the most common cryptocurrencies) encrypted to six million dollars – the highest ofNorth Africa. He thus placed himself in 4th position on the African continent, behind the NigeriaI’South Africa and the Kenya.
The latest update, provided by Coin.dancea portal specializing in bitcoin statistics, dated May 14, 2022. It shows that weekly bitcoin trading volume amounted to 1,143,660 MAD.
According to Badr Bellaj, director of new technologies at mchaina company developing blockchain technology in Morocco and Africa, the true estimate of these exchanges would be double, if not tripleof the aforementioned amount.
Out of 10,000 individuals, 21% would be cryptocurrency holders
On a sample of 10,000 people, 21% would be holders of cryptocurrencies, according to a recent survey carried out by Mchain and the results of which were first revealed to Médias24; this sample being representative of the Moroccan population aged 18 and over.
The survey also indicates that 63.36% of people surveyed are familiar with cryptocurrencies, including 8.32% would have at least heard of digital money.
On the 21% cryptocurrency holders, 57.35% said they invested less than 10,000 MAD in these crypto-assets; 32.64% made investments varying between 10,000 and 100,000 DHwhile 5.8% have invested between 100,000 and 500,000 DH. Investments of more than 500,000 DH represent 4.2%further indicates the survey carried out by Mchain.
Investors are mostly young people
In detail, these are the individuals who invest indigital moneywhile the moroccan companies favor investment in technology supporting these crypto-assets (blockchain), explains Badr Bellaj.
In Morocco, investors in cryptocurrencies are mainly youth average age between 20 and 30 years old, continues our interlocutor. They are generally practitioners of ecommerce or trading who opt for cryptocurrency because it allows a easy payment method and accessible to everyone.
Indeed, digital money works in a way decentralized. In other words, without any authority to issue, regulate or control it – through the regulator – nor intermediaries ensuring its transactions – the banks. By opting for cryptocurrency, its users thus avoid the traditional transaction processconsidered very long and constrainingsays Badr Bellaj.
Investments not always easy
It must also be said that virtual currency transactions continue to be very successful despite their formal ban in Morocco. The reluctance of Moroccan financial institutions did not effectively prevent the proliferation of these investments in the Kingdomnotes Badr Bellaj.
“We could even speak of a boomerang effect. However, since the warning formulated in 2017 by Bank Al Maghrib and Moroccan Capital Market Authority on the risks associated with the use of virtual currencies, investment in the latter continues to explode,” he notes. Investors would even left Morocco and would have settled in countries where these currencies are legally recognized in order to continue their investments there, adds our interlocutor.
Young investors also do not seem upset by the cryptocurrency volatility. For our expert, not only is this category of people aware of the risks linked to such investments – which notably include a haslack of consumer protection and an low convertibility –, but it is precisely this volatility that drives them to invest in the first place. However, for the vast majority of them, the fall in the value of assets represents an opportunity to invest, in the hope of a rise in prices.
More and more Moroccans choose toinvesting in NFTs (Not fungible token ; in French: non-fungible token), observes Badr Bellaj. The NFT is a Iunique and inviolable digital identifier which allows to authenticate a digital file (image, photo, video, etc.). An NFT can take infinite forms such as a work of arta single or even a simple meme.
For our expert, investment in NFTs, in Morocco as elsewhere, represents only one passing mode which he believes will eventually fade away in the coming years.
“Investing in NFTs also proves risk compared to investing in cryptocurrency which, unlike the latter, cannot be duplicated in any way,” continues Badr Bellaj.
Another pitfall: in practice, NFT platforms rarely check whether the issuers of tokens pointing to an underlying work own the intellectual property, as authors or licensees. Of many copyright infringements can then result from this lack of control, concludes Badr Bellaj.