A systemic crisis that began under Hugo Chavez’s regime in 2012, the current socio-economic turmoil experienced by Venezuela has left almost 90% of its population living in poverty, according to Reuters. Currency controls have restricted imports of food and hyperinflation has stripped the nation’s citizens of any purchasing power. Political corruption, unemployment, and violence have exacerbated Venezuela’s condition.
The Nano community, however, took charge to save a local Venezuelan community from potential starvation. For those unaware, Nano’s official use cases include its role as an ideal trading pair, a peer-to-peer payment option (for something as simple as splitting a taxi fare), micropayments (for digital asset rights, and content subscriptions), and business-to-consumer transactions. Its most highly touted feature is zero transactions fees. But Nano has transcended its original role as a frictionless payments system- it’s saved a local community of Venezuelans from potential starvation through donations directed towards Venezuelan Reddit user, “Windows7733.” Below is a report of his initial experience with Nano:
“I got it (0.5 Nano) from someone who helped me in my current situation, currently living in Venezuela. 0.5 nano is almost one entire monthly salary in my country. It’s more than I made last month. I’ve been doing a quick research into this cryptocurrency and it fits very well for my entire country, I’m going to read more about this and hopefully I’ll tell about nano to friends who would want to use it.”
Shortly after posting, “Windows7733” received 230 Nano, which equaled around $600 USD at time of donation. The Venezuelan user indicated that the donation enabled him to purchase over 102 kilograms (224.4 pounds) of food and additional financial and medical support for relatives, friends and neighbors.
The current state of the hyper-inflated Venezuelan Bolivar largely supports a central argument of Satoshi Nakamoto: governments are prone to breach their social contract with citizens as a custodian of monetary trust. In the same vein, the Nano community operated very much like Bitcoin (as a decentralized currency whose value is anchored and denominated by individuals all around the world, with no jurisdictional boundaries). Anonymous Good Samaritans sending Nano to Reddit user “Windows7733” is indicative of cryptocurrency’s beneficial role in a couple of ways:
The economic crisis in Venezuela is approaching a 6-year mark with no clear way out. However, relationship between cryptocurrency and the nation’s struggling citizens could build a stronger case for greater mainstream adoption on a global scale further down the road.