Alvaro Garcia

Posted on 13th December 2022

Latin America Crypto Scene in the Spotlight

news-paper Blockchain | News |

LATAM is becoming a big focus of attention in the crypto world. Many companies are investing and local communities are growing at fast rates, so the future looks promising.

Labitconf 10th edition

Recently the Labitconf event was held in Buenos Aires, Argentina. More than ten thousand people participated in this instance of the oldest conference in the crypto sphere. The Flexiana crew was there too!

Several leaders from the crypto world participated, such as Vitalik Buterin (Ethereum Foundation), Gloria Zhao (Bitcoin Core Dev), Jimmy Song (Bitcoin Educator), along with 40 other guests.

The conference also had the participation of local communities (such as Bitcoin Argentina, DeFi Latam, ETH Latam, Women in Crypto), in the multiple talks and discussion panels.

Bitcoin and Ethereum improvements

One of the main themes of the conference was the Merge of Ethereum. Vitalik Buterin, the creator of Ethereum, explained the implications of the migration from Proof of Work (PoW) to a model based on Proof of Stake (PoS) and also future plans for the project.

Gloria Zhao (a Bitcoin Core developer) made a speech about interesting advances in the Bitcoin protocol. A new expansion called Erlay will affect the transmission of messages to improve security, but compatibility will be maintained in the nodes. After those changes, it will be more difficult to determine which node sent the transactions, and bandwidth reduction will be from 40% to 84%.

Open and barrier-free digital identity

Public entities such as the City of Buenos Aires (Argentina), Monterrey (Mexico), and Mar del Plata (Argentina) are interested in decentralized identification technologies such as QuarkID.

The idea is to provide access to the credentials of medical care, bank cards, driving license, etc in a medium that follows international standards such as W3C and OpenID.

How to take care of your crypto

A hot topic, given the recent events with FTX and BlockFI, is taking care of your own cryptocurrency coins.

The community recommends removing them from exchanges, saving your coins into your own wallet, and also keeping the private key in a safe place.

People in this space are advised to avoid centralized services.

Remember: Not your keys, not your crypto!

The regulatory framework in LATAM

Argentina and many other countries are discussing new regulations in the crypto field, in order to protect users from conditions like the FTX scandal, and also to define bookkeeping aspects (taxes, affidavits, etc).

The situation in Europe (MiCA regulations), El Salvador (Bitcoin as legal tender), and the USA (IRS procedures), etc are being taken into account.

The concept of the digital nomad has also become popular, as people started moving from one country to another taking their cryptocurrencies and digital documents with them.

Stablecoins and Defi in LATAM

There is great growth in the use of decentralized financial tools (DeFi) as an alternative to the traditional market.

Users are migrating to these new modalities to defend against inflation (nearly 88% in some countries) and have access to the international market avoiding local blockages.

This contributes to the emergence of local companies and modernizing traditional banking, bringing the concept of CeFi (banks using crypto).

Find out more about Labitconf here.