Data from the crypto company suggests that more than 34 million people in Brazil currently lack access to banking services — and it's hoped the crypto rollout will boost financial inclusion.
MercadoLibre — dubbed by some as the "Amazon of Latin America" — has revealed further details of its plans to make cryptocurrencies accessible for hundreds of millions of people in Brazil.
This month, consumers will get the opportunity to buy, sell and hold Bitcoin and Ether — and through a partnership with Paxos, the USDP stablecoin will be thrown in for good measure, too.
Setting out the significance of this move, Paxos drew comparisons to when PayPal embraced digital assets in 2020 — not least because this crypto service is being delivered through a platform that people already know and trust.
"This year brought mainstream cryptocurrency and blockchain adoption unlike ever before and consumer interest will only continue to grow. More companies will follow in the footsteps of tech giants like PayPal and MercadoLibre because there is significant value to opening financial markets. The promise of blockchain technology is becoming a reality to an entire new region of users. Populations typically excluded from the financial system can now access this new market on an equal playing field."
The Potential of Crypto in Latin America
Cryptocurrencies have long caused excitement in Latin America — not least in countries such as Venezuela, which have been battling with hyperinflation.
And not far away, the Central American country of El Salvador has taken the radical step of embracing Bitcoin as legal tender. It's fair to say that neighboring nations are keeping a close eye on how this pans out.
There was speculation that Paraguay could follow in El Salvador's footsteps, but lawmakers later rowed back on this.
And back in October, Mexico's president also warned that there were no plans to elevate BTC to the same status as fiat.