These are the 4 requirements for bitcoin to expand in Latin America

Key facts:
  • Bitcoin is not for millionaires, rather it should reach millions, says Chevy Contreras.

  • The Bitcoineta started disclosure about Bitcoin and blockchain in 2018.

Sebastián “Chevy” Contreras, director of the La Bitcoineta outreach project, addressed the challenges to facilitate the adoption and use of bitcoin and decentralized technologies in Latin America at the Talent Land Digital event.

Based on the experience with Bitcoineta, started in 2018 and with a route of 40,000 kilometers in 6 countries, Contreras stressed that, although bitcoin is accessible to anyone, it is necessary to send information about this technology and its uses, according to the specific context of each community.

In his talk, held on Tuesday, July 6, Contreras began by recalling the different facets of Bitcoin. “First of all we can characterize Bitcoin as free or open source software. It is a protocol, it is also a decentralized network, and at the same time it is a unit of exchange of value,” said the speaker.

Taking these characteristics into account, they can be examined the functions that bitcoin would fulfill in the Latin American contexttake Contreras. “Among the problems that afflict Latin America are corruption or the lack of transparency of governments, inflation and also certain economic restrictions such as the difficulty for payments between countries in the region,” says bitcoiner. Bitcoin can offer solutions to these problems and limitations, he says.

Chevy Contreras, director of the Bitcoineta, referred to the different facets of Bitcoin. Source: Talent Land.

The Argentine speaker gives as an example the case of Europe, where it is easy to make bank transfers between countries, while in Latin America there are many difficulties for interbank payments. “This restriction can be solved in a simple way, through bitcoin payments, which are not only decentralized, but can be done without time limitations,” Contreras notes.

Factors for the spread of Bitcoin in Latin America

Regarding the initiative to bring bitcoin adoption to every corner in Latin America, Contreras refers to small and medium-sized communities. “In the big cities there is more information, more people who use bitcoin, and there are even bitcoin ATMs,” says the speaker. This contrasts with small populations and communities, which usually have less infrastructure.

The bitcoiner mentions the four factors that facilitate the spread of bitcoin and its uses: adoption, education, liquidity and bitcoin ramps. The first two are interdependent, Contreras points out. “Adoption requires that there is already someone who uses bitcoin, for example, a business that accepts bitcoin in a community. On the other hand, the greater knowledge of Bitcoin, also facilitates its use. They are two factors that feed back,” he points out.

Once bitcoin is already used, either as a means of storing value, or as a means of payment, there needs to be liquidity in that market, Contreras says. “For example if a business in a community accepts bitcoin, liquidity allows users to get BTC to make the payment. Also, the business requires liquidity when it needs to pay its suppliers, either in BTC, or in fiat money, ” he adds.

As vehicles for that liquidity are bitcoin ramps, ranging from individuals participating in the trading of bitcoin, online exchanges, and other means that facilitate the trading of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, Contreras noted.

In an interview by CriptoNoticias with Sebastian Contreras, in December 2019, he gave a summary of the evolution of the Bitcoin disclosure initiative, The Bitcoineta. At the time, bitcoin’s mobile had traveled more than 40,000 kilometers in six countries: Argentina, Chile, Bolivia, Brazil, Uruguay and Paraguay. The Bitcoineta team had visited at that time 120 localities and villages, had held about 100 events, contacting about 8,500 people.

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