A local bitcoin hub has launched in the tourist town of Santa Lucia, Honduras.
Coined Bitcoin Valley, the private initiative aims to create a circular Bitcoin economy and increase the flow of tourists to the region by marketing BTC acceptance in local stores, local news publication Diario La Prensa reported.
“Accepting bitcoin will allow us to open another market, gain more customers,” said Cesar Andino, owner of tourism businesses in Santa Lucia, according to a translated version of the report. “We need to globalize. We cannot close ourselves to technology and we cannot be left behind when other countries are already doing so.
The project was officially launched on Thursday and was launched as a joint development by the Blockchain organization Honduras, the Guatemalan cryptocurrency exchange Coincaex, the Technological University of Honduras and the municipality of Santa Lucia, Reuters also reported. .
According to the report, Carlos Leonardo Paguada Velasquez, founder of Blockchain Honduras and representative of the Central American Association of Cryptocurrency Users, said that about 60 companies whose owners have received training on the use of Bitcoin will launch the project. .
According to Paguada Velasquez, Coincaex will provide merchants with the necessary equipment for the acceptance of bitcoin as a form of payment.
However, despite the marketing, the initiative only aims to increase bitcoin tourism spending, as Coincaex’s point-of-sale (POS) machine attempts to mitigate BTC volatility by delivering local fiat currency to the merchant instead. .
Therefore, if a buyer spends BTC to buy food from a merchant, “Coincaex will receive the bitcoins and transfer the payment to [Honduran] lempiras at the restaurant,” explained Paguada Velasquez. “Business owners will not receive bitcoin.”
Beyond merchant adoption, the initiative also aims to foster local education about Bitcoin and cryptocurrency. Local students and entrepreneurs have the opportunity to take courses on Bitcoin and related technology that will last over a month.