Recently, digital assets have become increasingly pervasive in our daily lives – in the news, popular culture, and in our personal communications. In the first quarter of 2021, the number of global daily Bitcoin (BTC) transactions reached 367,536. Bitcoin alone now accounts for about $20 billion in daily online transactions. Not only that, but those who are familiar with digital assets and cryptocurrencies unconditionally trust them – Binance’s Global Crypto User Index 2021 shows 97% confidence in cryptocurrencies.
Thus, members of the Latin American community in the United States have some of the highest rates of cryptocurrency adoption: about 31% of Latin Americans own bitcoin, and the same data indicates that 25% of bitcoin holders are Hispanic. There are many reasons for this astonishing rate of adoption, not least because this group of people has less access to traditional wealth. In 2016, Latin American families made up less than one-sixth of the wealth of white families, and they were many times more likely to support family members they did not live with. In 2020, Mexicans living in the United States sent more than $40 billion to family members in Mexico, many of which were through cryptocurrency.
While the Latinx communities seem to be at the forefront of introducing and using digital assets to improve their daily lives, it is important that those in the crypto and digital asset space make an effort to include marginalized groups in their future plans. . Integrate and accept these communities in order to continue the upward path of adoption and ensure that everyone is aware of the wide range of benefits that digital assets can bring.
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The full spread of digital assets in Latin America is only a matter of time. Take, for example, El Salvador’s decision to become the first country in the world to classify Bitcoin as a legal currency. El Salvador residents can now earn $30 worth of bitcoins by downloading a state-run cryptocurrency app and registering with Chivo. Taxes can be paid in bitcoin and prices will be shown in bitcoin or US dollars. The main driving force behind the law is to help people from all over the world send remittances to El Salvador, as these payments tend to suffer from high transaction fees and commissions when made in fiat currency.
On the topic: What exactly is behind the Bitcoin law in El Salvador? Expert answer
Argentina follows El Salvador’s lead: Members of the Argentine National Congress recently introduced a bill allowing Argentines to receive their salaries in Bitcoin. Cuba, Paraguay and Uruguay have announced that they will officially recognize and regulate cryptocurrencies in their countries in the near future. The leaders of Argentina, Brazil, Panama and other countries supported El Salvador’s actions on social media.
Helping migrants sending remittances to their families and friends in their home countries is just one example of how digital assets can empower people. Blockchain bill payment services can also change the lives of people from marginalized communities. Blockchain payments are safer, faster, and often more cost-effective than traditional methods, and do not require access to traditional banking and payment channels. This is especially important because a large number of people from marginalized backgrounds do not have access to a bank account. Although they represent only 32% of the US population, black and Hispanic households account for 64% of non-bank households and 47% of the US population.
Overcoming entry barriers
Members of marginalized communities demonstrated their resilience and determination on how to innovate and use these new technologies to their advantage, overcoming the limitations of traditional finance. These groups are among the most popular cryptocurrency groups in the US and they are fast embracing and using the technology.
Now the role of the crypto industry, governments and organizations is to specifically reach and serve marginalized communities, integrate with their own and show how to reap more benefits and change everyday life for the better. If companies and regulators can learn about the culture and traditions of these societies, they can understand their needs and meet those requirements in a way that is mutually beneficial.