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Bahrain central bank set to test Bitcoin payment processing solution

Bahrain central bank set to test Bitcoin payment processing solution

The Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB) plans to roll out a Bitcoin (BTC) payment processing and payout solution in partnership with BTC payment processor OpenNode. 

In a press statement published on September 13, OpenNode stated that the solution is guided by the growing interest in digital assets across the Middle East. The company noted that the solution would be central to pushing economic growth while supporting businesses. 

“This is a watershed moment for the people of Bahrain, the Middle East, and the Bitcoin economy as a whole. OpenNode’s leading Bitcoin infrastructure solution continues to pave the way for countries, governments, and reputable financial institutions to adopt the Bitcoin standard and transact on the lightning network,” said Afnan Rahman, CEO of OpenNode.

Once deployed, OpenNode said that the payment solution would usher in the room to develop similar products in the future. 

According to Dalal Buhejji from the Bahrain Economic Development Board, the Bitcoin payment solution is part of the growing digital economy in a regulated space. 

Bahrain’s focus on developing crypto sector  

Indeed, Bahrain has recently focused on improving the environment for businesses in the crypto space after releasing the Regulatory Sandbox to develop the country’s FinTech ecosystem to diversify the digital economy.

Part of the framework allows crypto entities to conduct real-time research in a controlled environment but under the surveillance of a regulator. 

The development of the Bitcoin payment processor highlights Bahrain’s continued efforts to develop the cryptocurrency sector. In the recent past, the country has also enabled more businesses to set up bases in the region. 

For instance, in May 2022, the CBB granted a Category 4 license to cryptocurrency exchange Binance, allowing the platform to offer a wider range of services to users in the country. 

At the time, Binance was the first crypto service provider to hold a full Category 4 license in Bahrain.

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