Over the past year, we’ve seen a deluge of stories about companies and countries adopting cryptocurrencies, but is it reasonable to really say we’re seeing “adoption”? Last month, the crypto analytics firm Chainalysis published a report ranking adoption by country, reporting that we’ve seen a global adoption leap of 880% when compared to the previous year.
From their report, Vietnam, India, and Pakistan are leading the way. In fact, most of the top-20 are composed of countries with emerging economies, including many that have introduced legislation to handle the growth of cryptocurrencies. Chainalysis attributes much of the emerging market growth to peer-to-peer platform use. This is the most common on-ramp to cryptocurrency for individuals in these countries, largely because they often have minimal access to centralized exchanges that are available in the developed world. The primary uses of crypto in this case are to combat inflation in their local currency, to send and receive remittances without being subject to large fees, and to use crypto as a means of exchange.
Some noteworthy countries in the top-20 are Nigeria, where 1 in 3 people use cryptocurrency; Brazil, where trading volume is up 2,247% in the past year; Venezuela, which has seen hyperinflation of over 2,000% annually; and Afghanistan (21st on the list), which has recently seen tremendous economic uncertainty as a result of Taliban rule. Also listed within the top-20 were the US, China, Russia, and Brazil.