Changpeng Zhao’s journey into the world of cryptocurrencies is almost as meteoric as the price of Bitcoin. Of Chinese-Canadian descent, he financed his studies by selling hamburgers, worked at Blockchain.info as head of technology, and in 2017 founded Binance. It took him just six months to transform his company into the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange.
Honored this month by Bloomberg as one of the 50 most innovative people in the world, the category is shared with personalities such as Kristalina Georgieva, of the International Monetary Fund, Jamex Gorman, of Morgan Stanley, or the researchers behind the vaccines against Covid-19.
In dialogue with the historian, the businessman emphasized that after reaching its highest levels this year, the digital currency, despite volatility, “can continue to rise up to 100,000 USD”, and pointed out that “Bitcoin is less volatile than Tesla or Apple ”, so“ it is important ”. Learn to manage risk ”.
Do you think it can help economies like Argentina to allocate part of their reserves to cryptocurrencies?
Today, investing in Bitcoin for an entity is nothing new. We have the case of several companies that invested a large part of their assets in cryptocurrencies. If more and more companies are investing in this world, why shouldn’t countries take the same position? Bitcoin has proven its integrity throughout its existence, which will allow any country to include it in their reserves.
Currently, countries invest a large part of their money in gold reserves or in other countries’ money. The problem with gold is the high cost of storing it, and although it is not inflation, storage reduces its profitability as an investment. As for the exchange position, it has proven to be inflationary in all cases, while in the case of Bitcoin it is deflationary by definition and the cost of storing it is much lower than that of gold.
How do you see the expansion of Bitcoin in the region?
Cryptocurrencies solve a great problem that exists in the region, which is the low rates of access to the banking system, or the restrictions that are imposed on it. With Bitcon, or any cryptocurrency, we can give people freedom of money. This allows people who do not yet have access to traditional banking systems to invest.
Cryptocurrencies are often said to be for high-income people, but the truth is that cryptocurrencies offer anyone’s investment potential. A person who invests in a bank must have a certain minimum amount of money, while cryptocurrencies are divisible to the point that there is almost no minimum.
What are the biggest challenges when it comes to promoting Bitcoin as a payment method?
To push Bitcoin as a payment method, we still have to work on education. A great effort is being made to reach more and more end customers. We understand that regulations are an important factor when it comes to accepting cryptocurrencies as a payment method.
Today, there are restrictions in Argentina that do not allow an exporter to accept payments in cryptocurrencies if they sell a product abroad. There are also many doubts about its tax treatment. As the forecast becomes clearer and allows more flexibility in this regard, there is no doubt that we will see more payments in cryptocurrencies.