Mexico, cryptocurrency leader in Latin America

Brazil tops the list of cryptocurrency exchange systems, Argentina ranks first for cryptocurrency companies, and Mexico is the leader in cryptocurrency exchange trading in Latin America
Bitcoin coins placed on Dollar banknotes, next to computer keyboard – Photo: Dado Ruvic/REUTERS
20/02/2018
14:40
Mexico City
Laura Quintero/elEconomista.es
-A +A

A few years ago there was not any company dedicated to cryptocurrency exchange in Mexico, but now there are exchange systems and e-signature firms in the country, boosting Mexico to remain as the leader in cryptocurrency exchange trading in Latin America, assured José Rodríguez Director of Payments for Bitso, a digital marketplace which allows users to buy and sell Bitcoins on the open market in Mexico and throughout Latin America.

"If we compare ourselves to the United States or to some European countries, we are far behind, yet in Latin America, we stand out," José Rodríguez said.

Currently, Brazil tops the list of cryptocurrency exchange systems, Argentina ranks first for cryptocurrency companies, and Mexico is the leader in cryptocurrency exchange trading in Latin America.

Mexico might as well be considered a cryptocurrency paradise in Latin America with 238 FinTech startups in the country distributed in 11 different segments, positioning itself as the single largest FinTech market in the region.

"We are standing at the very beginning of the cryptocurrency development. It is the industry with the biggest growth in the world," José Rodriguez explained.

It should be noted that even though the most popular cryptocurrency in the world is bitcoin, interest in the market has resulted in such a diversification that there are over a thousand cryptocurrencies now.

Global cryptocurrency market reached USD$493,548 million by the end of 2017. In that year, its market value increased 29 times going from USD$17 billion in January.

Despite warnings from financial institutions, Eduardo Guraieb CEO at Fintech Mexico, an association for financial startups in the country, assured that "cryptocurrencies are here to stay."

Cryptocurrencies advocate for a "freer market," said José Rodríguez adding that digital currencies allow to buy, operate, and even invest without a bank or financial institution as intermediary.

Regarding the statements on cryptocurrencies and the regulatory framework made by Agustín Carstens, the former governor of Mexico's Central Bank (Banxico), Rodríguez said that cryptocurrency exchange systems such as Bitso or Fintech Mexico aim for a regulation able to verify that the money exchanged to cryptocurrency does not have an illegal origin.

Cryptocurrency is a digital asset designed to work as a medium of exchange that uses cryptography to secure its transactions, to control the creation of additional units, and to verify the transfer of assets. They are a type of digital currencies, alternative currencies, and virtual currencies.

Financial technology (FinTech) is the new technology and innovation that aims to compete with traditional financial methods in the delivery of financial services through the use of smartphones for mobile banking and investing services which seek to make financial services more accessible to the general public.

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