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Blockchain technology and sustainable development in  Africa’s agriculture sector

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A critical factor to some of Africa’s biggest development goals lies in agriculture. This is is because to a large extent, Africa is still an agro-economy and the Agricultural sector is an engine of job creation. With about 60 percent of total employment in sub-Saharan Africa allocated to farming. The Agriculture sector is also a driver of inclusive and sustainable development and by 2025 the sector is projected to add more jobs to the African economy. However, Africa’s agriculture sector is facing mounting challenges and the blockchain technology is being used to solve most of these problems.
While Agricultural production rate of the continent has increased, it still lags behind other regions. Considering the rise in population, Africa’s food system will be further strained by a population projection of 1.3 billion by 2050. This will cause a problem for food security which is a challenge as climate change also threatens the sector. Blockchain based agricultural firms such as Agrikore have began creating solutions that suit the African problem. Agrikore is a smart-contracting, digital payments marketplace system focused on providing information, product and a marketplace to stakeholders in the agricultural sector.
Employing the blockchain technology to Africa’s agriculture will boost the sectors and create sustainable development. For instance, BitMari a blockchain startup has set up a platform to launch smart farm contract which will aid agricultural funding in the continent. The firm is developing an application that allows buyers to purchase farming contracts for agricultural projects in Zimbabwe. Thereby creating the needed fund for the sector. Also, in Ethiopia, cryptocurrency startup Cardano signed an MOU with the government to use its developers use its blockchain for the local agriculture industry. Cryptocurrency exchange, Paxful is not left out as the exchange poured bitcoins into the agricultural and educational sector of Rwanda. The blockchain technology is also helping farmers get loan as a crypto startup is  bringing cryptocurrencies to the agricultural space, providing 50,000 farmers with loans worth US$10mn. The project which is a collaboration between Block Commodities, Wala, Dala, and FinComEco will develop and operate a variety of platforms, projects and initiatives in the agricultural commodity markets Africa. On the other hand, Kenyan agri-tech startup, Twiga Foods partnered with IBM Research to provide microloans to about 220 food stall retailers across Kenya with the use of a blockchain-based financing system.
All these projects are focused on transforming the actor knowing just how important such a sector is to the economy of the continent. From solutions that can be accessed on the mobile phones to loans, to smart contracts and even down to tracking in the supply chain managements of agricultural products. The blockchain is making a head way in the continent and hopefully the effectiveness of the technology will encourage governments to adopt it.  


 

What do you think about struggling nations employing the blockchain technology? Share your opinion with us in the comment section below.
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Blockchain News

Blockchain Tokens Scale Heights as Traditional Assets Struggle post COVID-19  

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Bitcoin (BTC) recently scaled past $17,000 once again since the first month of 2018. 

Arcane Research, a firm that evaluates the  digital asset market notes that “Bears are in disbelief.”  The firm added that BTC is fast posting its sixth weekly profit. It continued that “it seems like there is nothing stopping bitcoin at the moment.” 

As United States shares and European equities experience a downturn of events due to the COVID-19 induced lockdown, an ounce of gold joins the trend by dropping  by 0.1% to $1,888. 

BTC Surges as Traditional Assets Struggle

As BTC rates surge, the value of shares fall and gold rates drop. It will interest you to know that admist all these, Ethereum (ETH), a viable altcoin is enjoying the turn of events as the Decentralized Finance (DeFi) sector flourishes with favourable projections. It has particularly scaled by 266%, a whopping two times more than the digital gold- BTC.

DASH Flourishes Alongside Other Digital Currencies 

Also, the payment focused Dash coin (DASH) which stands at the rate of $81.15 and is also known for its optional privacy feature also appears to be flourishing this season especially because it offers users the option of transacting anonymously or otherwise. In comparison with traditional assets, it appears that crypto assets continue to scale heights.

Investors Turn to Digital Assets As the World Continues to Change

With the paradigm shifting towards digital assets, investors are stashing their hard earned monies into tokens like those mentioned above and also in new Blockchain tokens like dot (DOT), which is run on the Polkadot network. One of the founders of this Blockchain, Gavin Wood, was also one of the founders of the Ethereum Blockchain. He wrote the white paper for this network right after that of Ethereum as far back as 2016. Polkadot continues to be fast growing as the managing Director of KR1, an investment firm- Keld van Schreven notes that: 

“The market and investor appetite has been really strong for Polkadot’s dot token,”

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Blockchain News

Galaxy Digital Acquires DrawBridge and Blue Fire Capital

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Galaxy Digital, a Crypto Merchant revealed yesterday, the 13th of November, 2020 that it had acquired two firms so as to assume a major role when it comes to serving organizations that need to access virtual assets like crypto.

The organisation revealed this strategic move via a press release that it had acquired DrawBridge Lending which is a platform that enables investing funds in virtual assets and also  borrowing same. The second firm is Blue Fire Capital which provides services that cater to offering “two-sided liquidity for futures markets and digital assets”

Although Galaxy Digital did not immediately disclose details as to this new acquisition, the Crypto Merchant explained how this  critical decision will convert DrawBridge’s more than $150 million will be converted to Galaxy Digital’s.  

The President of Galaxy Digital, Christopher Ferraro,  notes: 

“Galaxy Digital’s mission is to bring cryptocurrency to traditional finance and vice versa.” 

He continued that:

(This move) “will enable us to further amplify our strong position as a go-to trading desk in digital assets and more rapidly grow our innovative portfolio of trading products and services.” 

Galaxy Digital, founded by Mike Novogratz,  had earlier revealed their third quarter earnings to be a whopping gross sum of about $44.3 million for the year 2020. It will interest you to know that the firm just recovered from 2019’s 3rd quarter loss of about $68.2 million.

Galaxy’s President continued that the two acquisitions would enable the firm “further meet what we believe will be an even bigger wave of institutional demand.”

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Bitpay Launches New Crypto Payroll Product

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A major payments service provider, BitPay has just released a new product to enable business enterprises to pay remuneration to their suppliers, employees, independent contractors with crypto.

The new product dubbed “BitPay Send” is a payment service processor that is centred on global and “gig-economy” enterprises that are set to pay their several clients digitally at one and the same time. 

BitPay CEO Stephen Pair notes;

“Blockchain payment adoption is growing because it offers an easy way to send and receive payments on a global scale” 

He continued that with this new innovation, businesses will not need to go through the hassles of buying, holding or supervising their crypto all by themselves. 

The following are the payment processes that can be run on BitPay Send:  “reward issuance, contractor payments, payroll, customer cash-out requests, and settlements with marketplace sellers.”

For a customer to receive payment via the Bitpay Send, he must have a BitPay ID and a digital wallet so as to obtain the payments. Companies who use this service pay a 1% to Bitpay as the latter’s commission.  Good news to users: they would not have to pay FOREX fees.

This new release offers a substitute to cryptocurrency payroll commodities

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