First Regulatory Framework For StartUps in Nigeria Underway.
Bill to regulate fintech and cryptocurrency.
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The collaborative bill calls for suggestions
A bill to regulate startups in Nigeria is on the works through collaborative efforts of Nigeria tech ecosystem players and representative of Nigerian government.
The journey began in May after a meeting between industry players and representatives from the office of the presidency. According to joint communique released after the meeting, the need for Nigeria Startup Bill became imperative to create an enabling environment for the industry that has generated revenues and financial indepency to Nigerian growing youth population. The absence of such regulatory framework it was noted has led to unwarranted government directives that frustrate startup ventures due to lack of legal backing.
“However, past occurrences have negated rather than supported this. Regulatory events that ended bike-hailing and suspended cryptocurrency transactions through banks have been setbacks to innovation. These events have not only raised eyebrows but questions as well, questions like “Can startups really flourish in Nigeria?” and “Why is it becoming harder for techpreneurs to build?” The press release stated.
The team is working to change this narrative. In a statement from Nigeria’s president released on the newly launched website to encourage startup owners and industry players to contribute to the bill, the president siad, “
“Our young people are our most valuable natural resource, at home and abroad. Their ingenuity, creativity, innovation and entrepreneurial spirit is evident to all.”
Going further he promised, “We will partner with the legislature to develop an enabling environment to turn [young people’s] passions into ideas that can be supported, groomed and scaled.”
Kola Aina, a leading Venture capitalist in Nigeria leading the arm of tech ecosystem entrepreneurs/ players in a statement on the launch of website for Nigeria Startup bill called on all industry players to visit the newly created website launched on 19th of July to visit the website and drop suggestions.
“It would be an exercise in futility to create this bill without first understanding the country’s present reality, and where the shoe hurts for different entrepreneurs. Thus, we’ve collated and are still collating your suggestions. Even though it has worked in Tunisia and Senegal, Nigeria is neither of these countries and we recognize the importance of keeping this in mind.”
The first draft of the bill is expected to be ready in June to guide as template to harmonise existing laws and open windows to accommodate new suggestions. Validation of the draft by startup ecosystem leaders are expected to take place in July. In August, a town hall meeting will be held for public consultation and validation of the second draft of the bill with stakeholders at state level in different geographical zones. The final draft is expected to be ready in September and submitted to the presidency in October who submits it as an executive bill to the national assembly.
You can have your say on what you want the bill to cover or look like by visiting the link startupbill.ng