Have you lost trust to Greek banks? Do you hate the Euro? Do you feel the capital controls restrict your business and private activities?No problem. There are alternatives. The Bitcoins, for example, the web-based digital currency. In order to facilitate business activities free of capital controls and the €uro and away form the Greke banks, there are allegedly plans to install 1,000 Bitcoins ATMs in order to help companies overcome the restrictions and personal aversions, if we come to believe the reports.
According to a report of Coin Telegraph, a website on the future of money, Bitcoin service provider and exchange Cubits has partnered with Greek bitcoin exchange BTCGreece to install the units to help small and medium sized businesses move money.
“We are creating the ecosystem of bitcoin and blockchain solutions in the Greek market.” Thanos Marinos, the found of the only Greece-based bitcoin exchange BTCGreece, told CoinTelegraph. “That will include the rollout of 1,000 ATMs and solutions for the e-commerce and tourism industry.”
Today, many Greek businesses have failed to pay their suppliers and partners outside of the country due to the countries record high financial problems and the recent capital controls, which froze all bank accounts, credit cards and debit cards in the country for weeks.
The Greek government still restricts the weekly withdrawal limit for bank accounts and debit cards to US$464.76 [€420] per week. To help small and medium sized companies send payments abroad, the two companies plan to develop a cross border payment system, which will allow small businesses to send payments quickly, at low cost. Marinos:
“Btcgreece and Cubits are offering a solution to the small and medium sized businesses to keep their operations, pay their invoices outside of Greece, pay for datacenter and servers, without the limitations imposed by the banks under capital controls.”
Also we will integrate some of the Greek charities onboard Cubits, as Cubits have done on a massive scale with the collaboration with Wikando,” added Marinos.
Additionally, bitcoin adoption in Greece is growing rapidly, he added. Individuals and business are beginning to recognize the advantages of bitcoin and its decentralized nature.
“Bitcoin adoption is happening and in a very fast pace,” explained Marinos. “Bitcoin in Greece is not just hype but a solution to day to day problems of people and businesses under capital controls. Also a key factor is that the trust for the traditional banking system is long gone and people are open to bitcoin.”
At the beginning of July, Marinos told Reuters that New customers depositing at least 50 euros with BTCGreece rose by 400 percent to “a few thousand” between May and June.” (Coin Telegraph)
Bitcoin is a web-based digital currency invented six years ago that floats freely and is not backed by a government or central bank. Its value has been highly volatile.
However, I have a huge question here: since Bitcoin is a digital currency, how the ATMs will operate in practice? Will they be loaded with Bitcoins but they will spit €uros? And how can one transfer Euro via Bitcoins abroad? Feed the ATMs with euro, exchange them into Bitcoins, make the payment, then exchange the Bitcoins again to Euro or whatever other currency?
And: don’t Bitcoins ATMs need a Bank of Greece/Greek government license?
KTG would appreciate a reasonable explanation 🙂