The allure of cryptocurrency has pulled in investors from all over the world, with new investors widely expected to join the global phenomenon every year in hopes of making a killing. As expected, different regions are at different levels and capabilities of adoption.
The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region has been exceptional compared to all other regions. It has recorded the highest crypto transaction volume growth year on year (YoY) in a side-by-side comparison to all other regions.
Statistics show that the MENA region has attained a surge in crypto transaction volume of 48% in a 12-month period from June 2021 to June 2022. According to the 2022 Geography of Currency report by Chainalysis, this was the largest growth in the world.
Close behind was Latin America, with a YoY crypto transaction volume growth of 40 %. After that, North America had an increase of 36%, Central and Southern Asia had a 35% increase, and East Asia had the least growth of only 4%.
According to the report, this phenomenal growth in the MENA region stems from it being home to three of the top thirty countries in this year’s index: Turkey, Egypt, and Morocco. The enabling factors included saving, remittance payments, and increasingly permissive crypto regulations.
Taking a closer look at MENA countries, Egypt was set apart by attaining the highest crypto transaction growth, attaining an unprecedented growth of 221.7%, followed by Saudi Arabia with 194.8% and Lebanon with 120.9%.
Factors favoring Egypt include a convergence of greater remittances and inflationary pressure that led investors to seek stable coins more immune to inflation during the period in review.
The behemoth in the MENA has remained as Turkey with its citizens having received $192 billion from July 2021 to June 2022 despite having attained a much slower YoY growth.
The MENA region still appears to hold a very small share of the crypto transactional market, accounting for only 9% of the global total cryptocurrency value received.
This could be in part explained by the crypto crackdowns underway by the Taliban regime in Afghanistan, which resulted in arrests of those continuing in crypto trading despite a ban.