Blockchain has an untapped potential in Latin America, the region could gain far more with this technology

by Juan Ibagon – Co-Founder of La Conexion

During the last 50-70 years, the region has been unstable and many citizens were forced to find different ways to protect their wealth and savings. After the boom of 2017, cryptocurrencies saw a wide-spread adaption, and this technology appeared to offer an alternative to national currencies and a way to fight inflation, especially in cases like Argentina and Venezuela.

At the same time, more than half of the region’s population remains unbanked, lacking basic financial services such as digital payments, money transfers, consumer lending and individual investing.

With the dawn of the fintech sector in LatAm, blockchain-based fintech companies could enter this market and provide real alternatives to 600 Million people, thus increasing financial inclusion. Likewise, new SMEs could use new platforms to enter this market and achieve unimaginable growth.

Besides the potential of inclusion, the technology will allow and give the opportunity to citizens to fight the biggest of the region’s problems: corruption.

Corruption, Latin America’s cancer: Blockchain the solution in the public sector

If Latin America’s national governments used blockchain technology to register transactions, it would ensure transparency and help to prevent misappropriation of funds which is needed for sustainable long-term economic growth.

In a region where politics have threatened property rights, blockchain and decentralized ledgers could protect asset ownership by keeping immutable records.

In voting systems, the technology could make voting more accessible, prevent fraud and allow for audits of election results. Technology such as blockchain with its decentralized and immutable ledger nature could be the key factor to restore the trust in public institutions to achieve a transparent and healthier democracy.

Blockchain for the private sector

In Latin America’s nations, start-ups and companies are implementing blockchain technologies across a variety of industries. Argentina, Mexico, Colombia and Brazil are where the crypto and fintech start-ups are rising at unprecedented speed.

Brazilian crypto brokers such as Bitcoin to You and Foxbit manage a large portion of exchanges for the country’s crypto exchange users, while the Mexican exchange Bitso works in a country where 80 million lack access to basic banking services.
Colombia’s private sector, too, is leading the way with early innovative adoption.

Building up more and more momentum for blockchain adoption in Latin America’s private sector could someday reshape industries and redefine services.