It is a widely known fact that Cuba has been stuck in an analogue phase to date. Thus, the likeliness for the country to become a crypto hub is extremely low. However, things seem to be changing now, thanks to the mobile internet connectivity that was rolled out almost around one year ago.
The internet access has opened a way for the Cubans to explore, understand, and carry out transactions in a variety of digital currencies, including Bitcoin. In fact, the crypto users in Cuba seem to be increasing as by way of crypto; it becomes possible for them to overcome obstacles levied by the United States sanctions on the Caribbean country, as per recent reports.
For those who are unaware, the US trade bars Cubans from utilizing traditional global payment systems as well as financial markets. Cuba locals can’t obtain debit or credit cards for use abroad and on the island. Hence, access to cryptocurrency surely seems to be making their lives a bit easier. Cubans are purchasing cryptocurrencies not just for making online purchases but also for trading and investments.
For example, a Cuban named Sanchez is resorting to top digital currencies such as Bitcoin to buy parts online that are otherwise unavailable in Cuba. Sanchez stated that it is truly unlocking new ways for them.
Another crypto enthusiast in Cuba, Alex Sobrino, said that as per his estimates, about 10K Cubans are using digital currencies. Sobrino has founded CubaCripto, a channel on Telegram wherein Cubans can discuss and trade in cryptos. Throwing more lights on the matter, Sobrino was also quoted as saying,
We are using cryptocurrencies to top up our cell phones, to make purchases online, and there are even people reserving hotel rooms with (it).
Since local Cubans don’t have debit or credit cards, they’ve to ask their relatives based in abroad to buy them their initial cryptocurrency. Many also purchase crypto through social media community channels such as CubaCripto.
In spite of the growing interest and usage of crypto, it still remains unlikely that crypto would become a primary method of payment in the Caribbean country. That’s because trading of digital currency falls in the country’s gray legal zone.