By David Drake
There are over 4,450 cryptocurrency ATMs installed globally, which represents a 62% growth over a period of one year. A recent Crypto ATM Market report projects that in the next five years, an exponential annual growth rate of at least 46% will be experienced in the industry. Further, the report projects an investment of $183 million from the current $18.5 million, representing more than 850% in growth.
Out of the 2,750 ATM installations registered globally, the United States has the largest number. But the installation of a two-way crypto ATM in the Philippines shows a growing prominence on cryptocurrency matters in the Asia Pacific region. Already, 6 crypto exchanges are licensed to operate in the Philippines, and at least 10% of the adult population in the country uses Coins.ph, the most popular exchange in the country.
Although Europe and North America dominate the crypto ATMs installation space, the Asia Pacific region is projected to grow at a faster rate due to the rise in disposable income and increased cryptocurrency popularity. The crypto ATMs are expected to provide users a convenient way to convert cryptocurrencies to fiat, make deposits and withdrawals.
Government regulation has been a major stumbling block when it comes to mass installation of crypto ATMs. The anonymous and decentralized nature of cryptocurrencies has also made it difficult to regulate the industry and promote cryptocurrency acceptance and adoption globally.
In realizing the potential of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology, the government of the Philippines has proactively developed laws to guide this sector. Joseph Oreste, founder & CEO of Qupon, concurs with the government’s regulation of cryptocurrency and calls for more oversight.
He says, “Fraud is a big problem in many projects today. The lack of clear industry regulation prevents the flow of investments needed to build the next generation of decentralized platforms and applications. These regulation and oversight should help weed out bad actors and allow for investment capital to flow to legitimate companies looking to utilize investor capital.”
Oreste notes that for the sector to realize its full potential and be trustworthy, it is important for stakeholders to inculcate a culture of compliance, active governance and ethical dealings in their internal structures.
Conformity with legal provisions is an important aspect of ensuring cryptocurrency industry success. In the US, cryptocurrency platforms are already complying with legal provisions.
“At Qupon we work closely with our attorneys to ensure that we are conforming to SEC and regulatory requirements to protect our investors and ensure that we can focus on delivering a global decentralized marketplace for merchants to advertise discounts on goods and services as digital coupons on blockchain technology,” Oreste adds.
With these developments, the Philippines is bound to make a mark as a leader in the Asia Pacific region when it comes to adopting and regulating cryptocurrencies. Recently, the Central Bank of the Philippines issued draft ICO and Exchange regulations and outlined policy measures based on standards adopted in Switzerland. It will be interesting to observe how the industry grows in this country considering its level of cryptocurrency adoption is higher in comparison to other Asia Pacific nations.
Disclaimer: David Drake is on the advisory board for most of the firms mentioned or quoted in this article.