The monetary situation in Argentina has become almost uncontrollable by the Central Bank and financial authorities. The increase in the money supply is accompanied by the overall decline in the supply of goods caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and related supply chain disruptions.
Inflation in Argentina and Demand for Crypto
The annual inflation rate in the country has reached 50%, causing panic among the local population As investments in real estate and gold are often problematic due to the low liquidity of such investments and the need for accumulating considerable financial reserves, Bitcoin offers an optimal alternative.
Individuals may be able to invest any amount of available funds into Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies. Moreover, the highest anonymity and pseudonymity standards imply that they may effectively escape any potential government restrictions or regulations. In this manner, Argentinians may become ultimately independent of the monetary policy implemented by their government.
As the growing number of people recognize significant benefits associated with the adoption of cryptocurrencies, they tend to present a higher demand for any financial solutions that may allow them to purchase and hold BTC and other major cryptocurrencies.
Due to the fact that most individuals lack the required experience in terms of working with crypto assets, they prefer receiving some additional institutional support from other companies that may facilitate their adoption of cryptocurrencies on a daily basis.
Solution Offered by Lemon Cash
As most ordinary Argentinians are familiar with banking and related transactions but unfamiliar with decentralized on-chain solutions, Lemon Cash, one of the most popular exchanges in the country, has decided to integrate the traditional banking functionality into the higher demand for Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
The company has offered the following technological solution: it provides its customers with Visa cards backed in Bitcoin. Moreover, the functionality enables the imminent conversion of BTC into pesos at the moment the user makes some payment in Argentina.
At the same time, money is effectively stored in BTC for the rest of the period, making it protected from the unprecedented inflation in the country. To encourage users’ transition to the new alternative, the company offers an additional 2% back in BTC.
Initially, Lemon Cash had issued 100,000 cards, and all of them were adopted by citizens within the minimum timeframe. As the growing number of people recognize the benefits of such BTC cards in comparison with any traditional fiat solutions, the demand for Lemon Cash’s services has increased dramatically.
The company states that it is planning to issue about 3 million additional cards this year. The deteriorating monetary situation in Argentina indicates that all of them will be probably purchased and intensely used in the following months.
Potential Implications for Bitcoin Adoption
A growing number of analysts recognize the financial disaster in Argentina that may reach the magnitude of that observed in Zimbabwe several years ago. The continuously growing money supply of fiat systems implies that inflation inevitably occurs, and during the periods of supply shocks, it may reach a double-digit level.
While the general population may be loyal to moderate inflation rates, uncontrolled inflation causes people to seek more sustainable alternatives. Overall, Argentina may become one of the global leaders in terms of Bitcoin adoption in the following years. In this manner, its residents may receive a number of unique benefits in the long run in terms of protection from inflation and the gradual appreciation of their savings.
The Argentinian government may also have to pursue more conservative policies to avoid the complete abolishment of the peso by its citizens. The high rate of bitcoin adoption in Argentina may be important for promoting the awareness of cryptocurrency and related opportunities among its residents and Latin America in general.
The success of Lemon Cash may encourage other exchanges and companies to adopt similar policies and provide additional functionality for Argentinians in terms of using cryptocurrencies both as a store of value and payment method on a daily basis.
With the gradual progress in people’s awareness of cryptocurrencies and blockchain, they may become more successful in using all available tools for managing their crypto assets, including those that do not require any intermediaries such as exchanges or financial institutions.