Another year goes by with a lot of news around the globe, not only because of the Covid-19 pandemic and the usual geopolitical conflicts, but also because of it the particular accelerated adoption of blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies in general around the world.
At the regional level, we have seen an unprecedented use of use cases and events in the disruptive technology space, in addition to links with government agencies, particularly in Colombia.
For this reason, we are giving a brief summary of the crypto movement and the entire blockchain ecosystem in this South American country. rich in coffee, traditions and warm people, which allowed the Colombians to position themselves as one of the leaders of the region in the technology sector in general.
Adoption in January
Colombia started the year with the big door in terms of advancing blockchain technology from the government sector. In early January, the Colombian government announced the SofisTICa program, which aims to encourage companies in the country, regardless of their size, to include blockchain technology in their business programs.
The program had a funding pool of up to 70 percent of the cost of participating projects, with a global value of up to $ 5.5 million.
The Financial Superintendency of Colombia has given its members the opportunity to adopt disruptive technologies such as blockchain and left the door open for the application of solutions based on disruptive technologies.
Minka, a local startup, seized the opportunity and started building the P2P payment infrastructure for money transfer using blockchain technology in Latin America. This is a sign of confidence in government institutions that are vulnerable to the use of this type of technology.
The strange tip went to the director of the Bitcoin Foundation in Colombia, Carlos Mesa, who was named “good year to invest in crypto assets “as if it were a seer of what was to come in the last quarter of the year.
February with Medellín
Medellín reports that its local blockchain ecosystem is using the Rutanio token for exchanges. with which each participant defines the value of his product or service.
In February Koibanx reported that 2019 was a favorable year for Colombia to develop blockchain-based solutions for the financial system. Thus, the country of New Granada would start the year and show that despite the circumstances, 2020 would be favorable for this sector and the blockchain ecosystem in general.
The increasing use of blockchain technology in the country has voices that go beyond blockchain enthusiasts. The National University of Colombia urges its graduates to download certified e-titles for their professional use, step towards massivation within the country of use cases based on disruptive technologies.
Cataloged as the worst month of the year for the crypto sector by the famous “Black Thursday” in Quindío, the local government suffered an attack with ramsomware demanding cryptocurrencies to restore encrypted public information.
Despite the negative marks, Colombia has tacitly pushed ahead with the adoption of blockchain technology to improve its process management, like Víctor Rodríguez, national advisor on innovation and digital transformation in the presidential cabinet, with the case of Medellín for Use a decentralized platform in public procurement.
When the pandemic crisis affected normal processes in all economic sectors, Xertify donated blockchain-based diplomas to those affected by COVID-19.
As an example of the acceptance and talent of blockchain technology in the Colombian field, TRUSTartup was a standout participant in Celo’s Blockchain Accelerator program.
This month DiMuto announced entry into Colombia for traceability of agricultural products with a view to the rest of the Latin American region.
While, The Bogotá city government launched free blockchain courses to teach the potential of the technology to citizens through the remote modality due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Likewise, The Colombian Ministry of Information Technology and Communications “MinTIC” did the same and announced a series of online training courses for citizens. to take advantage of the inclusion times.
In May, the research company Finnovista announced that the number of fintech startups had increased by 26 percent in one year. Lead the way with a variety of new ventures related to this ecosystem in the coming months.
Also this month, the Colombian state appears as one of the signatories of the document issued by the World Economic Forum on the protection of users’ rights to blockchain technology.
But the most notable news for the period was undoubtedly its confirmation The Ethereum Foundation is postponing the Blockchain Devcon VI event to 2021 and is using the Colombian capital as its headquarters.
This month the first Ethereum meeting begins in Bogotá, Online meetings entirely dedicated to Altcoin and its surroundings. Its relevance will then be highlighted after the Ethereum Foundation announced the development of their well-known Devcon event in Colombia in 2021.
Due to the situation of the COVID-19 pandemic, Colombian universities are starting to modernize the accreditation of degrees in educational institutions using blockchain technology.
In line with health challenges, Clínica Las América Auna in Medellín announced an agreement with Boston Scientific Colombia, Cornerstone and RoadLunch to use IBM blockchain technology to monitor medical device supplies in Colombia.
In addition, the first pro-blockchain claims by Colombian state officials will be announced in June after Colombian ICT Minister Karen Abudinen commented on the importance of blockchain technology in the state.
In early July, a solution for monitoring the production of medical cannabis using blockchain technology from NEM was presented. With the Baiotraze digital platform, consumers can know what they have just bought.
As a remarkable fact in the country The nation’s attorney general’s office announced the formal implementation of blockchain technology on the governing body to fight corruption. The use of blockchain in government procurement has become a milestone in the potential use cases of blockchain technology at the government level not just in Colombia but worldwide.
Due to the large coffee production in the country IBM presented a solution that aims to help improve traceability, efficiency and equity in the supply chain of this important grain.
On the other hand, Ecopetrol de Colombia announced investments of $ 70 million in disruptive technologies such as blockchain to incorporate into its management models.
As part of the academic preparation in the field of blockchain, the customs tax police and the DIAN of Colombia took part in an expert forum on the taxation of cryptocurrencies.
Likewise, the SENA “National Learning Service” announced the start of calls for projects related to blockchain technology, artificial intelligence, big data and other technologies, from a global budget of the institute to promote these endeavors worth around 24 Millions want to profit from pesos.
The eighth month of the year began with the inauguration of the Ciudadela Universitaria de Occidente in Medellín to train professionals in disruptive technologies such as blockchain. The first of its kind in all of Latin America.
As blockchain technology continues to grow in the country, the Puerto de Cartagena Group announced in a report that it will register its two terminals with the blockchain-based IBM TradeLens collaborative system.
In the same order, researchers from the University of Cauca published a blockchain proposal to implement an electronic medical record for families to be at the forefront of innovation in the healthcare sector.
On August 19, the draft of MinTIC’s Unique Guide to Adopting Blockchain Technology in Public Institutions was published. The aim is to prevent third parties from participating in the security infrastructure with the help of blockchain technology.
The Bogotá Chamber of Commerce released the results of the Global Impact Challenge Colombia 2020 this month, where a blockchain-backed reward proposal was the winner.
The introduction of cryptocurrencies also showed growth in cryptocurrency ATMs, which at the time had 58 units nationwide. Bogotá has the largest number of ATMs of this type, with a total of 34 units.
With the rise of cryptocurrencies in the local scene, scams were also commonplace, such as the negative rating this year. A good example was the scam that used the image of the Colombian President supposedly advocating the fraudulent Bitcoin-era program.
As part of the efforts to combat criminal activities related to cryptocurrencies, the Colombian Financial Supervisory Authority presented a new version of the risk management system for money laundering and terrorist financing “Sarlaft”, thereby complying with the provisions of the FATF’s International Recommendations on this subject.
As part of his progress in regulating financial activities Colombia released a Financial Innovation Activities Decree this month designed to encourage innovation in the country’s financial sector through the regulatory sandbox described in the provision.
With this decree 1234, Colombia is the first country in the region to promote the development of solutions in the financial sector through the use of disruptive technologies and offers a temporary license for this purpose.
Since its approval, many transnational corporations and local corporations with their various technological proposals have applied for entry into the local financial ecosystem.
As if that wasn’t enough, on September 22nd, 2020, the Colombian government officially asked companies to test their sandbox and use cryptocurrency transactions until December 31st under this regulatory scheme.
In this way, Colombia has taken a firm step in terms of the regulation of crypto assets between the different players in the sector.
The beginning of the last quarter was quite busy in the Colombian market, with a particular focus on the financial sector. In this trend, the fintech Nubank announced the creation of an engineering center in Colombia.
Aware of the upcoming challenges for applying technology in the Colombian marketplace and the need to meet the demand for skilled labor, Binance Latam announced this month a commitment to train more than 350,000 Colombians in cryptocurrency operations. , Blockchain and investment.
This was added The Ethereum Foundation, which not only announced its great event in Colombian countries next year, announced its intention to fund developers in a smart contracts course at the prestigious National University of Colombia.
The rise of digital finance in Colombia was recognized by the Financial Times, pointing to a 2019 study by Ernst Young that found the country with the highest fintech adoption rate in the region.
And following this financial trend, the banking sector was not far behind and as part of the digital forum entitled “Panorama for the Regulation of Crypto Assets in Colombia” The board of directors of the country’s banking association argued that the cryptocurrency sector can strengthen the country’s financial system, a position that is held with great optimism within the blockchain ecosystem.
The big announcement was undoubtedly from the Financial Superintendency, which announced surveillance models for the fintech sector in Colombia within the regulatory sandbox provided by Decree 1234 and then enabled a pilot between the Davivienda bank and the cryptocurrency sector under its supervision.
In November, Colombia positioned itself as part of the important Blockchain Summit Latam 2020 event. A group of local experts from the local ecosystem discussed the reality of the country in terms of finance, regulation, digital payments and blockchain technology.
The event also demonstrated the global scale and successful use case of blockchain technology in the public sector to fight corruption.
This month also featured local agricultural supply chain solutions in the region on Colombian territory, as well as online events to address the legal challenges and evidential value of blockchain in the local market.
One of the big announcements came from the Colombian stock exchange, signaling an agreement with the Colibrí consortium to introduce blockchain technology to improve operational efficiency in the OTC spot derivatives market.
The government agency MinTIC, which is responsible for technology and information in Colombia, published a reference guide in order to receive comments from the public on the introduction of blockchain in government projects.
Late in the month, GoChain hit the headlines when it announced a strategic alliance with Lexi to develop a crypto lab aimed at increasing blockchain technological adoption in Colombian businesses to meet private sector demands.
The beginning of the month had a spectacular boost for the Colombian movement. The Colombia 4.0 event, organized by Colombia Fintech, brought us nine rooms with guests of international standing who shared experiences and knowledge about the problems associated with financial technology, as Cointelegraph pointed out at the time.
Almost at the same time, FEDESOFT, an important local union that brings together 605 software companies in the state of New Granada, awarded Comforce as part of its prestigious Ingenio awards for the traceability of all contracts of a company with blockchain technology.
One of the most emblematic use cases due to the migration situation affecting Colombia from its neighbor Venezuela. Fintech Valiu and its cryptocurrency remittance service between the two countries announced the successful completion of a $ 5.25 million startup round.
Solidarity was also present among the actors of the local crypto ecosystem in Colombia. To support the recovery of the communities affected by Hurricane Iota, the local crypto asset trading platform Buda and the fintech VAKI announced the receipt of financial aid with voluntary contributions in Bitcoin and Ethereum for the affected communities.
Held for its third fully virtual and free edition this month, the Cripto Latin Fest cemented itself as a 100 percent Latin American event.
Colombia also had its own space during another important event in the region, laBITconf 2020, at the end of the penultimate day, where the regulation and introduction of blockchain technology in this area was discussed together with a group of experts from the coffee country. local.
The end of the year was no less pleasant, and the corporate superintendence in Colombia changed its doctrine and, according to Ámbito Jurídico, opened up the possibility of making contributions in the form of crypto-assets and corporate capital.
With this change in disposition, a larger window is emerging for the Colombian market with regard to the adoption of crypto assets and blockchain technology, confirming the Latin American country’s progressive position in this technological race.