Over the past decade, Zimbabwe has experienced a prolonged period of financial crisis. The situation was so bad that in 2009, the government stopped printing its currency and allowed the public to use foreign options such as the South African Rand and U.S. dollar. In 2015, the country completely switched to the U.S. dollar before reintroducing its RTGS dollar in 2019. In an effort to alleviate the crunch, the government discontinued the use of foreign currencies as legal tender.
The situation is yet to improve. Subsequently, Zimbabweans are looking of reliable alternatives. While mobile money has turned out to be one of the viable solutions, the premiums are currently as high as 40%. These hitches justify the increased adoption of Bitcoin in Zimbabwe.
Benefits of Trading in Bitcoins in Zimbabwe
- No cash withdrawal limit. Following the introduction of the new Zimbabwean dollar, the national government has collaborated with commercial banks to try and curb hyperinflation by limiting withdrawals. Currently, one cannot withdraw more than 300 Zimbabwean dollars ($20) in a week. Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin are a suitable solution to this scenario since there is no limit to the number of Bitcoins you can buy or sell at a time.
- Borderless currency. With cryptocurrencies being a globally-recognized currency, you can make transactions throughout the world. This is unlike a conventional currency like the U.S. dollar which is accepted as a means of transaction in America and not in Zimbabwe.
- Low transfer charges. Mobile money has turned out to be on the viable alternatives to transacting in hard cash in Zimbabwe. However, its premiums are as high as 40%. Since the transfer charges of Bitcoins are far lower than that, it could be the best solution for Zimbabwe’s financial challenges.
- Ease of transfer. You can transact in Bitcoins at the comfort of your house or office in minutes.
- Safety. Bitcoin transactions are usually secure hence are not subject to fraud.
- Not affected by inflation in a country. The previous Zimbabwean currency completely lost its value due to high inflation in the country. Since Bitcoin is a global currency, its value will not be determined by Zimbabwe’s financial stability or lack thereof.
Is Bitcoin Legal in Zimbabwe?
Cryptocurrencies are a global entity that cannot be controlled by any government since they are transacted virtually. In Zimbabwe, the government has forbiddencommercial banks from engaging in the trade of Bitcoin and other virtual currencies. However, this does not make it illegal for Zimbabweans to trade in Bitcoin. In fact, peer-to-peer transactions have soared in the country especially due to hyperinflation. However, cryptocurrencies are not recognized as a legal tender in Zimbabwe.
How to Buy Bitcoin in Zimbabwe
One of the ways of buying Bitcoins in Zimbabwe is through the established Bitcoin exchanges. These platforms are of three types:
- Peer to peer (P2P) exchange. An escrow system is used to link the Bitcoin buyer to its seller.
- Broker over the counter (OTC) exchange. The buyer gives cash to the exchange and in return gets the equivalent number of Bitcoins. This method also allows you to sell Bitcoins to the exchange and get the cash in your bank account.
- Trading platform. In this structure, cryptocurrencies are traded as a pair. It could be such a combination as BTC & Ethereum or BTC & RTGS dollar.
The existing forms of Bitcoin exchanges in Zimbabwe have certain advantages and drawbacks hence it is important to evaluate the features of an exchange before using it to buy Bitcoins. Some of the well-established Bitcoin exchanges that you can use to buy or sell Bitcoin in Zimbabwe are Paxful, LocalBitcoins, Remitano, andCoincola.
How to Buy Bitcoins in Zimbabwe Through a Bitcoin Exchange
Get a Dependable Zimbabwe Bitcoin Wallet
A Bitcoin wallet acts as some sort of digital bank where you can store your Bitcoins and retrieve them when you need to make a payment or make a currency exchange. When choosing a Bitcoin wallet, whether it is offline or online, it is important to evaluate all its features including its usability and secureness. Mycelium andExodus are some of the reliable Bitcoin wallets you can use in Zimbabwe.
In general, offline wallets are safer than the online ones. Additionally, when selecting a Bitcoin wallet, it is helpful to choose one that is not connected to any Bitcoin exchange. This is one of the ways of ensuring that you can access your cryptocurrency in the event of the exchange crushing.
Choose a Reliable Cryptocurrency Dealer
In Zimbabwe Bitcoin exchanges are the most reliable platforms for buying the cryptocurrency. While it is easy to acquire an account in any of the established exchanges, it is important to evaluate the pros and cons of the preferred platform. Depending on the exchange’s policies, you will require to present specific identification documents like a photo ID or your face’s real-time image.
Select the Method of Payment
Most Bitcoin exchanges in Zimbabwe accept cash transfer from a bank account as well as through a credit or debit card.
Purchase the Cryptocurrency and Store it in Your Bitcoin Wallet
It is important to note that different Bitcoin exchanges sell the cryptocurrency at different prices. Additionally, the price of a Bitcoin in general varies from time to time. However, the exchange you decide on should provide you with comprehensive details on the prevailing price of the cryptocurrency. It is also possible to place a limit order as a way of stipulating the price that you are unwilling to exceed. The subsequent transfer of the purchased Bitcoins to your digital wallet will attract a minor charge.
Contract for Difference (CFD)
If you choose to use CFD to buy Bitcoins in Zimbabwe, it is important to note that they usually have a high price volatility. However, it tends to be a straightforward and profitable method especially if you are buying the cryptocurrency for speculation rather than making payments. Once you have acquired a trading account, the next step is to predict if the Bitcoin price will go up or down. Subsequently, you will be in a position to make a Buy or Sell order.
How to Sell Bitcoins in Zimbabwe
Get an Account With Your Preferred Bitcoin Exchange
To simplify the process of withdrawing the funds acquired from selling the cryptocurrency, link the Bitcoin exchange account with your bank account.
Ensure the Bitcoins Are in Your Wallet
Make sure you receive a text confirming that you have transferred the cryptocurrency into your digital wallet. At times you will notice that the message does not appear instantly. Don’t panic; the process may take longer depending on the traffic.
Sell the Bitcoins
Once you have stated the amount of Bitcoins you intend to sell, click on “Sell”. Your exchange will act as the intermediary in the sale process and will do so at the prevailing market price. Placing a “Limit” order means that you can only sell the Bitcoin when its price reaches the stated mark.
Zimbabwe has been struggling to end the hyperinflation that has hit the country for years. The situation is so bad that it has introduced a new currency and banned the use of the U.S. dollar for transactions. With the current crisis, a stable cryptocurrency like Bitcoin could just be what the country needs.
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