In a very short space of time, Venezuela went from being Latin America’s richest to its poorest country.
At one point, inflation soared as high as 40,000%, and the monthly salary of a minimum-wage worker was less than $1.50.
Around 87% of its people live in poverty. And Venezuela is a big country. Its population is around 32 million. So that’s nearly 28 million people living in poverty.
In 2019, the crisis worsened, when the US slapped more sanctions on the country. In fact, things are so bad that some argue, inflation could be as high as 10,000,000%!
To put it in perspective, earlier this year, Bloomberg reported the price of a cup of coffee soared from 0.75 bolivars to 2,800 – an increase of 373,233%.
Just like in Zimbabwe, Venezuelans turned to cryptos like bitcoin to protect themselves from hyperinflation and currency devaluation.
As Crypto website, Cointelegraph recently reported,
Venezuela’s currency continues to suffer from runaway inflation, which is leading citizens to resort to cryptos means of storing value.
It makes sense.
Governments and banks can’t interfere in cryptos. They can’t take them away from you.
But if you had a bank account, a government could easily ban you from moving your cash out the country. It’s happened before.
Cryptos give you total control over your money.
A Venezuelan IT engineer explained it nicely,
“Bitcoin has given me access to the financial world outside Venezuela. We are not free to exchange our currency for US dollars or any other currency. We don’t have access to the banking services of the world, so crypto allows you to bypass those barriers”.
The point is, some cryptos are more than just a speculative investment. They’re helping people survive in even the worst economic conditions. This makes them a powerful weapon in times of crisis.