Monday, January 17

Uruguay will activate its first cryptocurrency ATM in January 2022

Key facts:
  • To carry out a transaction at the new ATM, a hot wallet must be used.

  • The official opening of the ATM will be on January 1, 2022 at the “Smart Point” in Punta del Este.

Uruguay will start in 2022 updating itself. Two local companies, InBierto and Urubit, plan to install a cryptocurrency automated teller machine (ATM), which, they say, will be the first in that South American country.

According to the information From the local press, the ATM, which will be called UTM, will be inaugurated on January 1, in an area called “Smart Point”, in the town of Punta del Este.

As required, through the ATM you can buy and sell digital assets. At first, they will start with only two tokens, which are from the creating companies themselves: Ferret Token y Urubit.

The ATM operation is simple: a user must have downloaded a hot wallet (hot purse), which are the ones that have to be connected to the Internet to work. Once that is done, you have to choose whether to buy or sell. If it is to be acquired, you will have to choose between the two tokens and then, in the wallet, convert them to other cryptocurrencies, such as bitcoin (BTC) or ether (ETH).

If you want to sell, you must make the transaction at the ATM to receive the fiat money. Although there is currently no cash at the ATM in question, it is planned that this function will be activated before the opening.

Speaking to El País Uruguay, Adolfo Varela, who is the director and founder of InBierto, commented that his company has a purse, called U-Wallet, that works in line with the new ATM.

Regarding commissions, the manager indicated that they are working with a “redistributive economic policy” and that the cost of transactions within the network is 3%, which is distributed among those who operate with Ferret Tokens or Urubits in their portfolio.

More than 40,000 cryptocurrency buyers

In Varela estimates, in Uruguay there must be more than 40,000 cryptocurrency buyers that negotiate person to person. “Then, users have to meet someone they trust to sell or buy their cryptocurrencies,” he said.

Regarding the choice of Punta del Este as the place to start with the ATM, he clarifies that it is because they have the offices there. But nevertheless, They plan to install one in Montevideo, the Uruguayan capital, in the summer of 2022.

“We believe that the implementation of cryptocurrencies is going to increase more and more. Today we are at the same level as the implementation of the internet in 1999 or 2000, which was only 0.5% of the world’s population (…) Today, everyone already has the internet, so the adoption of cryptocurrencies is growing every year. Furthermore, the economic policies of cryptocurrencies are deflationary and protect the user from fiat money inflation. So, as America is a continent that knows a lot about inflation, adoption is going to be bigger and bigger ”.

Adolfo Varela, director and founder of InBierto.

The official opening of the ATM will be in January 2022. Source: Urubit.

As said, this device will be the first cryptocurrency ATM in Uruguay, carried out by two local companies. Although in 2013 a similar proposal was made by the company Moneero, seems not to have prospered.

In fact, and according to the data of ATM RadarIn Uruguay there is no active cryptocurrency ATM at the moment, unlike other nearby countries, such as Argentina or Chile, where there is a presence of these technological devices.

Regulation and growth

The arrival of the new ATM in Uruguay favors a sustained growth of the ecosystem in that country, although it casts doubt on the regulations that, according to the Central Bank, they were scheduled for the last quarter of the year.

According to what we recorded in CriptoNoticias, the Central Bank of Uruguay (BCU) reported that, given the increase in the use of cryptocurrencies in that country, they were evaluating market regulation.

As they outlined in a statement, it was estimated that the BCU would have a proposal to modify the current law, in order to establish “a clear framework to move towards regulation” of activities with cryptocurrencies.

However, it is the date we are and there has been no further information from the regulatory body. In contrast, initiatives such as UTM emerge, which highlight the presence of the Bitcoin ecosystem in the Uruguayan nation.

Anyway, from the Central Bank, although they do not have a completely open position towards bitcoin, they do understand that this activity allows the local financial system to be more efficient. They recognize, in fact, that these instruments “may have the potential to contribute to the development and efficiency of the financial and payments system.”