A proposed bill seeks to impose a ban on the creation, promotion or trading of cryptocurrencies without a license in Egypt, Egypt Independent reported citing a report from the Middle East News Agency (MENA).
In January 2018, Sheikh Shawki Allam, the Grand Mufti, had said that trading bitcoin was “forbidden” by Islam, adding that the digital currency carried risks of “fraudulence, lack of knowledge, and cheating,” BBC reported.
However, it seems the regulatory authorities are not softening their stance on cryptocurrency regulation with the new bill.
An official source at the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) told MENA that the draft bill grants rights the Board of Directors of the central bank to issue rules governing the trading and dealing of cryptocurrencies.
The proposed bill, the source added, place high importance to fintech, matching pace with the global financial innovation, and using cutting-edge technology to improve financial and banking services.
The source further said that the new law “provides legal authority for the electronic authentication of bank transactions, electronic payment orders, and transfer orders as well as for the electronic settlement of checks and the issuance and circulation of electronic checks and electronic discount orders, provided that Board of Directors of CBE issue rules and procedures regulating all the aforementioned actions.”
In December 2018, reports suggested that the CBE was considering issuing a blockchain-based version of the Egyptian pound in an effort to reduce issuance and transaction costs.