Last year, El Salvador dominated headlines as the first country to adopt as legal tender. The move is controversial both in and outside of the country, heralded for its potential to bring financial services to large portions of El Salvador’s unbanked population and criticized for its top-down implementation. This has created a sense of uncertainty and made some Salvadorans feel they lacked a choice, despite locations like El Zonte already accepting Bitcoin (BTC) as payment through organic developments that predate the law.
These arguments, while for and against the law, don’t actually exist in contradiction to one another. While the decision may have been made by the government, it is bringing financial services to new portions of the population. Not all governments, however, are interested in declaring Bitcoin a legal tender, leaving us to consider a new question: How can we encourage crypto adoption in emerging markets like El Salvador without involving governments?
Promoting mobile accessibility
Offering educational services
Breaking financial barriers
Encouraging institutional adoption
Branching out from Bitcoin
Angélica Valle serves as ecosystem lead for Mexico at Celo Foundation, bringing with her more than four years of experience in Mexico’s blockchain ecosystem. Before joining Celo, Angélica founded the digital transformation and blockchain consulting agency Oruka where she served as an adviser providing tailored solutions to governments and companies involved in the blockchain industry. In addition to her work with Mexico’s blockchain ecosystem, Angélica has more than 10 years of experience in areas of public policy, social entrepreneurship and innovation.
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