In a move that aims to make self-custody cryptocurrency purchases more accessible in Nigeria, MetaMask has partnered with MoonPay to expand direct on-ramps with local banks. ConsenSys, the parent firm of MetaMask, announced the integration on March 21, allowing users in Nigeria to purchase crypto via instant bank transfers. This new feature is available within the MetaMask mobile and Portfolio DApp, significantly simplifying the process of buying crypto without using credit or debit cards in Nigeria.
Previously, MoonPay had a card integration feature, but about 90% of attempts to buy crypto with a credit or debit card were declined, according to Santos, a MetaMask spokesperson. With the new integration supporting local bank transfers, crypto purchases on MetaMask are now faster and cheaper, allowing users to access crypto without sending assets from a centralized exchange.
Despite the current issues with crypto on-ramps in Nigeria, the country has emerged as a major market for MetaMask, ranking third in mobile monthly active users. It is also among the top ten countries in terms of visitors to metamask.io over the last month, Santos added. Nigeria is one of the world’s top 20 ranked countries in cryptocurrency adoption, according to the Chainalysis 2022 Global Crypto Adoption Index. Some reports suggest that 35% of the Nigerian population aged 18 to 60 owned or traded cryptocurrencies in 2022.
This high level of adoption is despite the Central Bank of Nigeria banning banks from servicing crypto exchanges in February 2021. However, in December 2022, local media reported that the Nigerian government was preparing to pass a law recognizing the usage of Bitcoin (BTC) and other cryptocurrencies to keep up to date with “global practices.” This move, coupled with the new integration between MetaMask and MoonPay, may signal a growing acceptance of cryptocurrencies in Nigeria.
It is important to note that Nigeria’s cryptocurrency market faces challenges such as a lack of regulatory clarity and security concerns. However, the partnership between MetaMask and MoonPay provides a viable solution for those seeking to invest in crypto without the use of credit or debit cards. As the adoption of cryptocurrencies continues to grow in Nigeria and other countries around the world, we may see further innovations aimed at increasing accessibility and usability.