Argentinians can now pay for the state public transport system Sistema Único de Boleto Electrónico (SUBE) with Bitcoin.
This has been made possible by Alto Viaje, the platform that is used to top up commuter SUBE cards, in a partnership with Bitex. Bitex is a blockchain-based platform that offers financial services to businesses.
The SUBE card is used by nearly 7 million commuters across 37 points in the country that include railways, bus and subway systems. Bitex CMO Manuel Beaudroit pointed out the statistics, emphasizing that such a large user base was the perfect point for support of the world’s largest cryptocurrency. In his words, the partnership’s objective was to provide people with access to “such a revolutionary technology, as Bitcoin”.
SUBE’s Alto Viaje, the platform through which the transport cards are topped up, is backed by Argentina’s Nacion Servicios SA, a subsidiary of the central bank itself, the Banco de la Nación Argentina.
Argentina has seen a lot of development in the cryptocurrency sphere last year. The ongoing economic crisis in the country has meant a lot of the population is heavily investing in cryptocurrencies. Even with being notorious for their volatility, digital tokens offer a less risky form of money holding as the country’s inflation rate continues to rise. The support of Bitcoin as a means of payment at the state level perhaps indicates that the authorities realize what benefits cryptocurrencies can have.
Blockchain voting project Democracy Earth developer Santiago Siri has gone so far as to suggest that the central bank of Argentina should have at least 1% of the national reserves in the form of Bitcoin.
LocalBitcoins, the over-the-counter crypto trading platform, saw trade volume from Argentina in the 2018 jump from 13% to more than 33,153%, representing an astounding 2,550 times increase.
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