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Tony Richards: “The use of cryptocurrencies in Australia is just so trivial that it doesn’t have an effect”

Tony Richards, the head of payments policy of the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA), gave a speech to Australian Business Economists in which he stated that, due to the stable and credible nature of the Australian Dollar, the use of cryptocurrencies among Australian citizens is irrelevant and it will stay like that for a long time.

Let’s go back in time.

The date is May, 31st and the Australian Brisbane International Airport announces that “all the merchants and airport terminals accept various digital assets such as Bitcoin (BTC), Dash, Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Ethereum (ETH), Nem (XEM), and Steem,” thus becoming the most cryptocurrency friendly international airport in the world.

The announcement didn’t come as a surprise as the preparations for the implementation of cryptocurrency payments commenced in January, in cooperation with Australian payment provider Travelbybit.

Brisbane Airport Corporations’ (BAC) official stated that the new means of payment would help their retailers maintain “relevance and resilience.”

Now we will time-travel to June, 4th.

On the entrance to Australia’s small beach town, Agnes Water the billboard reads: “Welcome to Agnes Water-1770, Australia’s First Digital Currency Town.”

The billboard wants to bring attention to the fact that 30 local businesses including accommodation providers, tour operators, restaurants and the local pub are now accepting Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, NEM, Litecoin and Ethereum payments.

The value of Australian Dollar keeps declining, and in the meantime, the head of payments policy of the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) is telling that citizens of Australia have “stable and credible” currency to lean on. He continues his speech with a claim that “with bitcoin, the only regulation to date has been AML”. “There hasn’t been any regulation in any country, that I’m aware of, that speaks to the question of investor protection,” he concluded, maybe forgetting to mention how is his institution protecting Aussies from the catastrophic movement of their currency in the chart below.

Chart AUD/USD

The government’s officials’ opinions regarding cryptocurrencies have been more negative than positive in the past. Lately, with wider adoption of Bitcoin and the altcoins, more positioned individuals comment on the subject without doing due diligence, and Tony Richards is just one of those examples.

Percent of World ICOs

The research shows that Australia is, in fact, one of the world’s most advanced countries when it comes to cryptocurrency adoption. It holds the 7th place in the percentage of the total world’s ICOs, which is more than Germany, Canada, and France.

Australia also has the “Innovation Hub” – the program which helps fintech companies to comply and navigate the regulatory world.

With the cryptocurrency friendly town and international airport, we can put Australia up there with the most prominent cryptocurrency countries like Switzerland, United Kingdom, and the United States. Denying that by speculating that “the likelihood that Australia will have a significant adoption of an alternative currency seems to be pretty low,” is called – being ignorant.

Well, the same Tony Richards stated that he is a proud owner of “small amount of Bitcoin” himself. Isn’t that adoption?

 

Luka Kapetanic

An ex-restaurant business owner turned cryptocurrency fanatic, with over 12,000 followers on investfeed.com. Miner, Investor, trader and, above everything else - a writer, with coinlive.io, and cryptodigest.com in his jobs portfolio.

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