Entrepreneur defends bitcoins, cryptocurrency

By Ivamere Nataro 12 November 2018, 12:00AM

An independent cryptocurrency entrepreneur from Zambia, Mapanza Nkwilimba, says cryptocurrency is real and is in Samoa to stay.

Contrary to numerous warnings from the Government – including Prime Minister Tuilaepa Dr. Sa’ilele Malielegaoi - against any Samoan joining the scheme, Mr. Nkwilimba assured the scheme is legitimate.  

He made the point during a presentation at the National University of Samoa (N.U.S.) where he spoke about the revolutionary ways of digital assets, which would contribute to increasing household level income, in particular, the mining of bitcoins. 

 “Bitcoin as a concept is something that is still very new and is misunderstood by many people, it is misunderstood by institutions, but it has come to stay, and it’s real,” Mr. Nkwilimba said. 

“Cryptocurrency has come to stay and banks that ignore it are at their own peril, and now global central banks are discussing cryptocurrency, how are the banks going to benefit from cryptocurrency.”

Unlike the dollar or the tala that is only of value in Samoa, Mr. Nkwilimba said bitcoins can be used anywhere in the world, even if it’s not a legal tender some countries.

“There are 21 million bitcoins that will be supplied and mined. The supply of the bitcoins keeps reducing every four years. The last bitcoin will be mined in 2140. Once you’ve started mining, you actually mine for life. The mining is daily, you mine 24/7,” he said. 

He explained that it is projected the value of the bitcoin will increase in the future due to the increase in demand from the people. 

“When it started, there would be a block of bitcoins that would be released every 10 minutes, and the computers start to mine to complete those bitcoins. 

“After four years, they are halved, so there are only 25 blocks of bitcoins that would be released every 10 minutes to be mined. 

“After another four years, where we are now, again it was halved. So right now there are 12.5 blocks of bitcoins that are released every 10 minutes for those who are participating to mine them. In 2020 there is going to be another halving, so there will be 6.1 blocks of bitcoins that will be released every 10 minutes for mining. 

“What does this mean? 

“It means that right now we still have about 2 percent of the world population that is aware of the bitcoin, but right now because of the awareness carried out on bitcoins, thousands and thousands of people are coming into the business. So what it means is that as the supply is being halved and the interest is growing, the value of the bitcoin is going to continue to go up because the supply is cut but the demand is high.”

Mr. Nkwilimba said bitcoin is the main cryptocurrency and more than a million companies worldwide are accepting bitcoins. The number is increasing.

“In February 2011, one bitcoin was worth $1, in March 2017 one bitcoin was $1,250 and in January 2018 one bitcoin was $10,000.”

Mr. Nkwilimba said in order to do business in bitcoin, one would require: a large electronic system on which the applications could be built into. 

“You can use it to fight corruption etc. It’s a data based where you can use many other applications on it and manage just one of them. It allows consumers and suppliers to connect directly. 

“It can help reduce fraud, every transaction recorded and distributed on a public ledger for anyone to see, so all the transactions are happening on that block chain. The transactions are very fine on the block chain. 

Should there be interest in joining, he said a person can buy shares through a computer server that is based in Iceland. 

The presentation at the N.U.S. was organized and facilitated by the Faculty of Business and Entrepreneurship. 

Attempts have been made to get a comment from the Central Bank of Samoa which has been warning against crytocurrency and bitcoins. 

By Ivamere Nataro 12 November 2018, 12:00AM

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