Argentina’s Alto Viaje just teamed up with Bitex to allow the use of Bitcoin on the nation’s SUBE (Sistema Único de Boleto Electrónico) payment platform. SUBE is a card-based system that can be used on numerous modes of transportation across Argentina, including subways, buses, and trains.
Last week Cointelegraph in Spanish reported that Alto Viaje, which is a third-party platform, expanded its payment methods to accept Bitcoin with the help of Bitex. It previously accepted PayPal, as well as Rapipago, which is a payment system native to Argentina.
The recently announced program will allow more than seven million people who currently use the SUBE system to pay with BTC. Manuel Beaudroit, who is the CMO at Bitex, commented that his company was happy to work with Alta Viaje to expand the use of Bitcoin.
Argentina is Open to Using Bitcoin
Unlike many countries, Argentina has been willing to let crypto-based businesses and payment platforms grow. In addition to being home to one of the first banks that used BTC to circumvent the SWIFT system, Argentina is home to a growing number of BTC ATMs.
Banco Masventas made headlines last year when it worked with Bitex to transfer money out of Argentina with BTC, a move the bank claimed was much faster and cheaper than using the aging SWIFT system.
Argentina has dealt with numerous banking restrictions over the last 20 years, which may be part of the reason why the nation is happy to let the crypto economy take root. Unlike fiat currency, cryptos can be used to transfer money on a peer-to-peer basis.
Cryptos Make Trade Easy
Cryptos have a major advantage in a geopolitical environment that is growing more complex. Argentinians have dealt with major financial problems since at least the 1970s, and many lost access to their money during the crisis that started in 1999.
Today people in Argentina can hold a variety of cryptos, which will be at their disposal no matter what happens to the banking system in their country. Not only do cryptos ensure that people have something they can trade with, but they also guarantee that the economy will continue to function.
Centralized control over the banking and monetary system is generally accepted by people who live in countries like the United States, probably because they have never lived through a real financial crisis.
A Means of Making The Economy Work
It should come as no surprise that cryptos are catching on in Latin America, which has a long history of economic upheaval. Abstract terms used by economists serve to obfuscate the real engine of economic functionality; the people who work to produce useful goods and services.
When a banking system collapses, people can’t trade easily. Centralized control over money and markets has a dark side, which few in the developed world are familiar with. Cryptos are a new way for people to connect with each other.
Digital money doesn’t need to be stored in banks, nor do banks need to be involved in the settlement process.
If the Argentine banking system collapses (again), the people there could still pay for transportation using BTC. The banks don’t matter with cryptos, which is why digital peer-to-peer platforms are such a radical change from the existing financial system.
Cryptos could be even more important for larger financial institutions and corporations, in the event of a global banking crisis. At the end of the day, a corporation has to maximize shareholder value, regardless of what kind of money they use for trade settlement.
Bitcoin might not be the perfect crypto to replace the global financial system, but it does have some amazing advantages over fiat money and centralized banking. As the century unfolds, we might see more people turning to cryptos as a currency of last resort.