Bogotá — Brazil, Argentina and Mexico lead the adoption of crypto assets in Latin America, and they are among the top 20 of the Global Cryptocurrency Adoption Index, which is dominated by the Central and South Asia and Oceania (CSAO) region.
The report by US blockchain analytics firm Chainalysis warns especially about the recovery of above-average cryptocurrency adoption in lower-middle-income countries (LMICs).
“Many of the top countries in the Global Cryptocurrency Adoption Index are in the IMB category, and as a whole, IMB countries have seen the strongest recovery in cryptocurrency adoption over the past year,” the report states.
In fact, it adds that it is the only category of countries whose total crypto adoption remains above where it was in the third quarter of 2020, just before the most recent bull market.
According to Chainalysis’ vice president for Latin America, Javier Carrión, “lower-middle-income markets tend to be up-and-coming countries with dynamic and growing industries and populations”.
The top 20 countries for cryptocurrency adoption
According to the Chainalysis report, these are the countries that have the greatest adoption of crypto:
“Many of them have experienced significant economic development in recent decades. Perhaps most important of all, 40% of the world’s population lives in lower-middle income countries, more than in any other income category. This data tells us that cryptocurrencies are going to be an important part of the economic future in those regions,” he said.
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The global list published by Chainalysis is dominated by India, followed by Nigeria, Vietnam. the United States, Ukraine, Philippines, Indonesia and Pakistan.
For Latin America, the best placed is Brazil, in ninth place globally, and surpasses other markets for cryptoassets such as Thailand, China, Turkey, Russia and the United Kingdom.
After this group of countries comes Argentina and Mexico, which rank above Bangladesh, Japan, Canada and Morocco.
Recovery of global adoption of cryptocurrencies
Chainalysis states that, in compiling this list, not only the countries with the highest volumes of gross transactions with crypto assets are taken into account, but also the different degrees of adoption.
“We want to highlight countries where people are increasingly adopting cryptocurrencies. That’s the basis for the design of the Global Cryptocurrency Adoption Index,” said Chainalysis research director Kim Grauer.
The collapse of some of the major players in the cryptocurrency business such as the FTX exchange and the collapse of the Terra stablecoin undermined confidence in the ecosystem, according to the report.
Still, crypto assets remain an alternative in emerging markets hit by currency depreciation and difficulties in making international transfers, especially related to high transfer costs.
The authors of the report highlight the adoption results in Asia, but warn that globally it has declined overall during 2023 and is far from its historical highs.
However, “there has been a remarkable recovery since the late 2022 dip at the time of the FTX implosion”.
Within the ranking there are other subcategories such as the classification of centralized services, the volume of P2P exchanges, the value received from DeFi, among others.