Insight & Analysis

US rapper to build ‘crypto city’

Stack of coins

The city in Senegal will use the Akoin cryptocurrency.

Rapper Akon has ambitious plans to build the world’s first ‘crypto city’ in Senegal. It will be based around Akoin, a new cryptocurrency.

The Smack That star revealed his plans at the recent Cannes Lions Festival. At the conference, he explained that the city’s residents will be able to buy, hold and spend cryptocurrency straight from their smartphones.

“It brings the power back to the people and brings the security back into the currency system,” Akon explained. “It also allows the people to utilise it in ways where they can advance themselves and not allow the government to do those things that are keeping them down.”

He said that cryptocurrency could be “the saviour of Africa”.

Currently, there is little more detail around what this city will look like, although Akon has said that he wants to build a real-life Wakanda – the fictional, high-tech African city in Marvel’s Black Panther.

It is easy to dismiss Akon’s ideas as mere fantasy but work is already under way, building the city on 2,000 acres of land gifted to the musician by the President of Senegal.

Akon also has previous in driving change in Africa. His charity, Akon Lighting Africa, which finances solar panels across the continent, is currently working on 25 projects. The UN has recognised this work and recently secured a US$1bn credit line.

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