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Author Topic: How bitcoin can be useful in developing nations like the African continent.  (Read 2391 times)
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April 13, 2017, 04:19:03 PM
 #1

Hey folks!

I'm new to the forum here. I've been watching with excitement lots of documentaries about Bitcoin and cryptocurrency. As probably most of you here, I am completely fascinated by the wonders of Bitcoin and its potential use in paving a new path towards decentralization of the financial system. I live in Ethiopia (East Africa), second highest population in the continent with a large amount of people still considered unbanked (low to no access to financial institutions). Hence, I am seriously considering starting a bitcoin service in the country to try and alleviate some of these issues. I am therefore open to any engagement of productive discussions about Bitcoin and its benefits in developing nations. How can we implement Bitcoin systems here? Where do we begin? Who can we partner with? How to include the financially unincluded? How can local businesses thrive with Bitcoin? How can donations happen using Bitcoin? And all questions related to developing nations and Africa. Thank you all in advance for the active participation!
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April 14, 2017, 05:20:24 AM
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It's a pity that this post got no responses so far. THAT's what could thrive Bitcoin to da moon Wink

I just wrote something similar in another thread, so here are my two cents.

I don't know Ethiopia in detail (I have a desire to visit it eventually because it looks like a very interesting country) but I would focus on two aspects that Bitcoin could deliver to that kind of country:

1) a more reliable currency in economies with an unstable (very inflationary) native currency. I might be wrong but I think that's currently not the case in Ethiopia. It was the "selling point" that made Bitcoin interesting for people in countries like Argentina, Venezuela and maybe also Nigeria.
2) "banking services without banks". It could be of two kinds:
- savings accounts - these can be made with simple wallet software (even on cheap Android phones)
- crowdfinancing/microfinance. It's not necessary to code a own platform, you could use existing platforms (I've found BTCjam) although the language barrier might be a problem.

A major problem is, that should not be hidden, volatility. For poor people, lose 20% in a month (happens very often with BTC, even if the long-term trend is bullish) or having to pay back 20% more for a loan could be life-threatening. That's why I would probably first focus on things like donations and slowly try to "familiarize" the people with BTC.

To start, you will first need a fiat currency gateway. Are there already Bitcoin exchanges in Ethiopia? If not, are there at least traders on Localbitcoins? You can start offering BTC there for your local currency, making profit from the spread between bid and ask. Another option without much investment needed would be an integration of an Ethiopian payment processor to Bitsquare (an decentralized exchange).

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April 14, 2017, 05:42:58 AM
 #3

I totally agree with this.  Here are the key reasons that people in developing countries would invest in Bitcoin:

-Bitcoin would naturally be stable.  In current conditions it's unstable, but with enough increasing backing from investors it will become more stable.

-Gold is easy to steal.  If you're in an area with a lot of desperate people you're not safe holding something as valuable as gold, and gold is also malleable - it could get destroyed in unsafe conditions, especially if you can only hold a tiny bit of it since you're quite poor anyway.  Bitcoin allows better control over funds.

-Increasing access to the Internet.  Even some poorer people will have some kind of Internet access, and if you have a device you can store Bitcoin.  You could even store it online and it would be moderately secure because you wouldn't have to access it too often.

Unfortunately, some people are even poorer than this and wouldn't have any significant money to put into Bitcoin anyway.  Not to mention that Bitcoin might be hard to buy with unstable currencies on exchanges.
 

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April 14, 2017, 06:39:52 AM
 #4

Hey folks!

I'm new to the forum here. I've been watching with excitement lots of documentaries about Bitcoin and cryptocurrency. As probably most of you here, I am completely fascinated by the wonders of Bitcoin and its potential use in paving a new path towards decentralization of the financial system. I live in Ethiopia (East Africa), second highest population in the continent with a large amount of people still considered unbanked (low to no access to financial institutions). Hence, I am seriously considering starting a bitcoin service in the country to try and alleviate some of these issues. I am therefore open to any engagement of productive discussions about Bitcoin and its benefits in developing nations. How can we implement Bitcoin systems here? Where do we begin? Who can we partner with? How to include the financially unincluded? How can local businesses thrive with Bitcoin? How can donations happen using Bitcoin? And all questions related to developing nations and Africa. Thank you all in advance for the active participation!

It is hard if only a few people with small resources will go into that kind of business making the use of bitcoin available to all local shops around africa. It will need a big company to finance that kind of system and the government of Africa to allow the use of bitcoin as a medium of exchange in the area. But do not worry it will be only a matter of time before your dream will come into reality.
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April 14, 2017, 07:10:07 PM
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It is hard if only a few people with small resources will go into that kind of business making the use of bitcoin available to all local shops around africa. It will need a big company to finance that kind of system and the government of Africa to allow the use of bitcoin as a medium of exchange in the area.

Well - to receive BTC in Ethiopia it would first require a simple fiat-BTC gateway. A permanent LocalBitcoins trader would already be the first step and doesn't require too much capital - only a bit of knowledge about risk analysis and a bit of math to calculate the buy/sell rates. You can start with an relatively high spread to minimize risks and then experiment with the ideal rates.

Another possibility is to integrate the Ethiopian Birr in an already existing payment processor like Bitpay (here is a list of alternatives, perhaps integration in a smaller one is easier).

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April 14, 2017, 07:47:39 PM
 #6

Maybe you can find that interesting.https://humaniq.co/ cryptocurrency bank for unbanking areas.The problem with btc is that btc is not so much mobile friendly,but look link above,contact with devs maybe you can help and even get some job with project,thay have his thread on btctalk


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Yakamoto
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April 14, 2017, 07:50:11 PM
 #7

Hey folks!

I'm new to the forum here. I've been watching with excitement lots of documentaries about Bitcoin and cryptocurrency. As probably most of you here, I am completely fascinated by the wonders of Bitcoin and its potential use in paving a new path towards decentralization of the financial system. I live in Ethiopia (East Africa), second highest population in the continent with a large amount of people still considered unbanked (low to no access to financial institutions). Hence, I am seriously considering starting a bitcoin service in the country to try and alleviate some of these issues. I am therefore open to any engagement of productive discussions about Bitcoin and its benefits in developing nations. How can we implement Bitcoin systems here? Where do we begin? Who can we partner with? How to include the financially unincluded? How can local businesses thrive with Bitcoin? How can donations happen using Bitcoin? And all questions related to developing nations and Africa. Thank you all in advance for the active participation!
You're going to need everyone who comes in contact with Bitcoin to first and foremost be able to operate a wallet and be able to operate a smartphone. They also must be intelligent enough to deduce scams and other various malicious media on the internet before something like Bitcoin becomes viable for them.

Implementing Bitcoin systems will require a lot of time, as the population will have to get used to it, along with having reliable internet access for users, unless you want to set up places in a market or whatever where they can go and trade Bitcoin back and forth for fiat cash or whatever.

Local businesses will need my first point in order to thrive with Bitcoin.
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April 14, 2017, 09:34:29 PM
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Do all people have internet and mobile phones in Africa? Even if they do, how exactly they are going to maintain a proper wallet without it getting lost or robbed? A lot of people cannot even understand how to get a wallet started and pay with Bitcoin to be honest.

But that's where the future should be going so we have a nice worldwide currency.
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April 14, 2017, 09:49:30 PM
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Do all people have internet and mobile phones in Africa? Even if they do, how exactly they are going to maintain a proper wallet without it getting lost or robbed? A lot of people cannot even understand how to get a wallet started and pay with Bitcoin to be honest.

But that's where the future should be going so we have a nice worldwide currency.

I think bitcoin can really help these kind of country, but the problem is, will they be interested in such digital currency? can they use a laptop or android phone? How about internet connection? Countries with poor people will not be interested in internet thing, they will be very busy for things that they will really have a profit like selling on their market. Bitcoin will not interest such busy people.
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April 14, 2017, 10:00:46 PM
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Do all people have internet and mobile phones in Africa? Even if they do, how exactly they are going to maintain a proper wallet without it getting lost or robbed? A lot of people cannot even understand how to get a wallet started and pay with Bitcoin to be honest.

But that's where the future should be going so we have a nice worldwide currency.

I think bitcoin can really help these kind of country, but the problem is, will they be interested in such digital currency? can they use a laptop or android phone? How about internet connection? Countries with poor people will not be interested in internet thing, they will be very busy for things that they will really have a profit like selling on their market. Bitcoin will not interest such busy people.

At their current state its a big NO though Its not like there's no other way right? People can always learn or encourage others to learn . Imagine if people there started using bitcoin there like 70/80% of them, I bet the tables will flip . We can see the dropping jaws of people who said that they can't adapt to technology . It's a long road but its worth giving a shot .

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April 15, 2017, 06:36:25 AM
 #11

Just as a small addition; There are already some traders buying BTC in Ethiopia, via Localbitcoins.

https://localbitcoins.com/country/ET

There are also cash-BTC buyers:

https://localbitcoins.com/places/607888/addis-ababa-et/

No sellers so far, that's the problem.

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April 15, 2017, 06:51:37 AM
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Bitcoin can be really helpful for the african continent by providing a fast and reliable financial system and by providing opportunity also because it is very easy to earn money in bitcoin if you have a lot of patience in doing simple tasks like freelance and signature campaigns. I believe that if bitcoin will be implemented in African Continents then it will be a huge help in innovating that country to a new level.

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April 15, 2017, 07:27:58 AM
 #13

Hey folks!

I'm new to the forum here. I've been watching with excitement lots of documentaries about Bitcoin and cryptocurrency. As probably most of you here, I am completely fascinated by the wonders of Bitcoin and its potential use in paving a new path towards decentralization of the financial system. I live in Ethiopia (East Africa), second highest population in the continent with a large amount of people still considered unbanked (low to no access to financial institutions). Hence, I am seriously considering starting a bitcoin service in the country to try and alleviate some of these issues. I am therefore open to any engagement of productive discussions about Bitcoin and its benefits in developing nations. How can we implement Bitcoin systems here? Where do we begin? Who can we partner with? How to include the financially unincluded? How can local businesses thrive with Bitcoin? How can donations happen using Bitcoin? And all questions related to developing nations and Africa. Thank you all in advance for the active participation!

In my own opinion, the first thing to do is to have a platform where enthutiast of bitcoin can gather or currently are in the country. You will be surprised the total number of people involved in bitcoin already in the country. It could be a forum from there you learn how its being done. With majority not in the banking population, then you might have more issues because users and traders will be spread across the country and its the bank that will serve as the  connect like we have here.
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April 15, 2017, 08:13:26 AM
 #14

Bitcoin can be really helpful for the african continent by providing a fast and reliable financial system and by providing opportunity also because it is very easy to earn money in bitcoin if you have a lot of patience in doing simple tasks like freelance and signature campaigns. I believe that if bitcoin will be implemented in African Continents then it will be a huge help in innovating that country to a new level.
For a financially back country bitcoins help with its much better solution in the financial system. People of Africa have started to make them adopted to the growing technology. As a part now the betterment is happening through the bitcoin usage for various needs.



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hermanhs09
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April 15, 2017, 08:32:18 AM
 #15

Hey folks!

I'm new to the forum here. I've been watching with excitement lots of documentaries about Bitcoin and cryptocurrency. As probably most of you here, I am completely fascinated by the wonders of Bitcoin and its potential use in paving a new path towards decentralization of the financial system. I live in Ethiopia (East Africa), second highest population in the continent with a large amount of people still considered unbanked (low to no access to financial institutions). Hence, I am seriously considering starting a bitcoin service in the country to try and alleviate some of these issues. I am therefore open to any engagement of productive discussions about Bitcoin and its benefits in developing nations. How can we implement Bitcoin systems here? Where do we begin? Who can we partner with? How to include the financially unincluded? How can local businesses thrive with Bitcoin? How can donations happen using Bitcoin? And all questions related to developing nations and Africa. Thank you all in advance for the active participation!

There are certainly be a lot of new economic activity that can be achieved through bitcoin and isn't previously available to every African, that is something that you should take note of.

Bitcoin is so flexible that everyone can use it, anywhere.

So an african living in, say the US away from his family doing some part time jobs may wants to make a transfer to his family back in Africa, but Western Union or global bank transfers take a cut from his total transaction. Bitcoin does not do that.

Helping the unbanked also, a lot of Africa's population don't have access to banking services, bitcoin is the perfect way for them to have a safe way to protect their wealth against inflation, and have access to something that they can save up upon.

machinek20
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April 15, 2017, 11:47:27 AM
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Bitcoin can help the citizen to earn more money, so its means it create a stronger economics condition for the people, bitcoin gives a lot of new opportunity to earn, so bitcoin really help the country from economics sector, and alos it can help the people to do a global transaction, but I doubt they got a proper infra structure like internet to earn and used bitcoin
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April 15, 2017, 12:34:00 PM
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It is hard if only a few people with small resources will go into that kind of business making the use of bitcoin available to all local shops around africa. It will need a big company to finance that kind of system and the government of Africa to allow the use of bitcoin as a medium of exchange in the area.

Well - to receive BTC in Ethiopia it would first require a simple fiat-BTC gateway. A permanent LocalBitcoins trader would already be the first step and doesn't require too much capital - only a bit of knowledge about risk analysis and a bit of math to calculate the buy/sell rates. You can start with an relatively high spread to minimize risks and then experiment with the ideal rates.

Another possibility is to integrate the Ethiopian Birr in an already existing payment processor like Bitpay (here is a list of alternatives, perhaps integration in a smaller one is easier).
The big problem with starting bitcoin-related business in such a country as Ethopia, is that the part of the community which has access to internet is not so big, in the whole population of Ethiopia.
I doubt that anyone without reliable internet connection and computer would like to use bitcoin, or even listen about it, which is completely understandable for me:
Why would you get interested about some digital goods, when you even cannot have access to them?

They would need a computer and internet, which is not so easy to achieve in 3rd world countries, first, you should get money for food, water and place to live.

Bitcoins are not necessary goods, you can live without cryptocurrency.

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April 15, 2017, 01:30:34 PM
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Just as a small addition; There are already some traders buying BTC in Ethiopia, via Localbitcoins.

https://localbitcoins.com/country/ET

There are also cash-BTC buyers:

https://localbitcoins.com/places/607888/addis-ababa-et/

No sellers so far, that's the problem.


Wow, it looks like it is worth going to Ethiopia!  Smiley

One buyer offers to buy Bitcoins at 30470.22 ETB / BTC rate, which corresponds to 1,321 USD/BTC. He has a good rating on Localbitcoins so I don't think he's lying. Here's from his profile: "First to try and build trust only 200 USD, then up to 3000 USD."

I'm not sure whether it's safe there, but I think if I had lots of bitcoins I would go to Addis Ababa to exchange some.

Hydrogen
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April 15, 2017, 04:37:02 PM
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I know parts of africa have experimented with cellphone based money transactions.

A cellphone application, bitcoin/crypto wallet, could be a decent step.

Retailers in africa accepting bitcoin/crypto would be another.

Given africa's past troubles with zimbabwe dollar hyperinflation, btc could be useful to hold/grow the value of africa's currency.


ekoice
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April 15, 2017, 05:42:20 PM
 #20

Hey folks!

I'm new to the forum here. I've been watching with excitement lots of documentaries about Bitcoin and cryptocurrency. As probably most of you here, I am completely fascinated by the wonders of Bitcoin and its potential use in paving a new path towards decentralization of the financial system. I live in Ethiopia (East Africa), second highest population in the continent with a large amount of people still considered unbanked (low to no access to financial institutions). Hence, I am seriously considering starting a bitcoin service in the country to try and alleviate some of these issues. I am therefore open to any engagement of productive discussions about Bitcoin and its benefits in developing nations. How can we implement Bitcoin systems here? Where do we begin? Who can we partner with? How to include the financially unincluded? How can local businesses thrive with Bitcoin? How can donations happen using Bitcoin? And all questions related to developing nations and Africa. Thank you all in advance for the active participation!
Definitely,Bitcoin could help for the progress of African people.Like Nigeria,soon Ethiopians would adopt bitcoins.Since bitcoin is in its early stage in Ethiopia, you could become a pioneer in bitcoin services in your country.Bitcoin's utmost use is to be realized fully if such countries get benefit by adopting bitcoins.Bitcoin could reach and benefit all the places where banking sector doesnot even want to provide service due to low profitability.
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