The situation on the ground in Venezuela is unimaginable to those of us from the US and other countries where the type of economic chaos and inflation being wreaked upon the citizens of the Latin American country has not been allowed or felt for several decades. Inflation is estimated somewhere around one million percent for the native Bolivar, a figure so absurd it’s difficult to believe.
As a result, Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have seen massive adoption by comparison to regions where fiat currencies are often considered more convenient. A bit of inconvenience suddenly becomes acceptable when the alternative is your funds being so devalued that what would previously buy a home will no longer buy you a lunch. CCN.com has reported extensively on the activities of crypto pioneers in Venezuela.
Today is “Giving Tuesday,” a day where the haves are encouraged to help the have-nots, which was fomented by a New York YMCA and the United Nations Foundation back in 2012. It aims to get people in the giving spirit. The cryptosphere has a long history of giving money away. One of the first public Bitcoin services was Gavin Andresen’s Bitcoin Faucet, which gave away what would today be thousands of dollars per draw.
A new wallet service based in Mexico called AirTM has decided to do their part this year by raising no less than $1 million for #GivingTuesday to give to 100,000 Venuezualans in need – $10 each – which, according to them, goes a long way in the beleaguered economy.
This holiday season, AirTM and Zcash are partnering with consumers to help Venezuela. AirTM is planning to airdrop $1M in cryptocurrency with the help from Zcash, who is an active participant in the project— to Venezuelan AirTM users via a crowdfunding campaign. AirTM will not be taking a cut or charging any overhead fees, so 100% of the value will go directly to 100,000+ AirTM verified users.
Though $1M to 100,000+ people may not seem like a lot of value, small contributions from around the world can add up to tremendous buying power in countries like Venezuela. Just $10 USD can buy a Venezuelan citizen a month of medicine, two weeks of rent, or ten days of food. AirTM’s revolutionary platform is what helps ensure $10 USD retains its value.
The initiative is located at airdropvenezuela.org and allows anyone to make a crypto donation which will be redistributed as part of the effort. We spoke to AirTM about how they were organizing this, and found out that the Z-Cash Company were among the first and biggest donors. While they wouldn’t divulge the sum of their contribution – which is to be expected when dealing with Z-Cash in general – they called it “sizeable.”
The Zcash Company’s involvement consists of a sizable donation in ZEC toward our goal of $1M USD-equivalent in cryptocurrency, as well as helping with gathering support from the cryptocurrency community at large by connecting our messages us with their audiences.
We noted that the recent price decline might have an effect on the impact of this effort, but they digressed, saying that in fact the USD/BTC pair slaughterhouse market we’ve seen is, in fact, a plus for those on the ground in Venezuela.
Relative to dollars cryptocurrency has been in decline, however over the same period relative to bolívares cryptocurrency has been on a consistent incline in value. Any cryptocurrency fluctuations in value are diminished by the increase in potential for wealth creation coming from introducing and exposing Venezuelan recipients to a new form of globally accessible money that can lead to far greater economic opportunity and growth.
People are amazing. We didn’t conquer the elements tens of thousands of years ago by mistake. The situation in Venezuela is one in a long string of troubles the country has faced, and the addition of socialist policy and the taxation that goes with it has been murderous to the economic potential of the average person. The author makes these statements objectively. They are not political in nature. It can be in the same paragraph noted that in the United States, upward mobility has been stagnant for decades, no matter what the government does. But at least in the United States if someone works and earns a paycheck, they can expect it to retain the value of his labor for a couple of weeks at an absolute minimum.
We asked the organizers to comment on the importance of providing Venezuelans with more opportunities to engage in the free-market of currencies as provided by the advent of Bitcoin. After all, thanks to the miracle of the tokens we more privileged often view as fun but not exactly necessary, Venezuelans with access to the global internet have opportunities they never could have 20 years ago.
When money from aboard is brought into Venezuela it is commonly exchanged to local bolívares to pay for everyday needs such as food, medicine and rent. Inflows of capital into the Venezuelan economy are constrained because the end value is dramatically diminished relative to the initial value sent due to passing through the government rigged exchange rate.
Providing the free-market vs. government exchange rate reduces the friction (cost) to bring money into Venezuela, providing Venezuelans with more incentive to receive into, and international buyers, donors and investors more incentive to send their money to the Venezuelan economy. As a result of reducing the barrier to capital entry, there are more opportunities for Venezuelans to take part in the global economy such as freelance work, eCommerce, investment, remittance, and other web-based opportunities.
CCN.com invites our readers and other crypto companies to make this #GivingTuesday a #GivingWeek and far exceed the goal of $1 million (~270 BTC at present rates.)
Featured image from Shutterstock.
Last modified: May 20, 2020 2:20 PM UTC