Uruguay received its first cryptocurrency ATM. It is currently installed at Punta del Este in the south-east of the country. Inbierto and Urubit were responsible for the development of the cryptocurrency machine. The first focused on the software, while the latter developed the hardware.
Inbierto CEO Adolfo Varela stated that the machine’s goal is to build trust in the country’s cryptocurrency market. Most crypto commerce takes place in peer-to–peer markets, which are not regulated and cannot be processed by banks. The possibility of falling prey to scams is eliminated with a cryptocurrency ATM. Varela is positive that they will continue to expand their crypto ATM network throughout the country. He said:
We plan to keep growing in Maldonado and Colonia, Montevideo, and we hope to have coverage across the entire national territory by the end. We have been able to make arrangements for other countries to install it.
Only five cryptocurrencies are supported by the installed crypto ATM (which also includes two national tokens: ferret token, urubit and bitcoin), binance coin ( BNB), binance USD (BUSD). Because they depend on the Binance Smart Chain to process transactions, the companies have not added Ethereum support to their machines. Varela explained that Ethereum’s fees would discourage users from using the machine and so BSC integration was chosen instead.
Regulating a Gray Area in the country
Although cryptocurrency regulation is still a grey area in the country’s laws, the central bank issued a statement last October declaring that these assets are not illegal or legal and that citizens can use them, while being aware about the risks.
The Central Bank of Uruguay issued December a document outlining a plan for regulating crypto assets. It proposes to review existing laws and make changes to include them within various regulations. Instead of creating a new virtual asset law that covers all of these assets, it will instead create a virtual asset law.