PayPal’s Vice President and General Manager Blockchain, Jose Fernandez da Ponte, said they are working on a new feature that will allow bitcoin and cryptocurrency withdrawals.
After enabling the buying and selling of cryptocurrencies directly into the accounts of its US users at the end of October, and after allowing them a few months ago to make payments through PayPal using the cryptocurrencies stored in their accounts, the company is now working on making the tokens withdrawable so that they can be sent to an external wallet.
Yesterday, during a speech at the Consensus 2021 conference, da Ponte in fact revealed that such functionality is in the works. He said:
“We want to make it as open as possible, and we want to give choice to our consumers, something that will let them pay in any way they want to pay.
They want to bring their crypto to us so they can use it in commerce, and we want them to be able to take the crypto they acquired with us and take it to the destination of their choice”.
However, the timing of the release of this new feature is not yet known, nor is it known when other crypto services will be enabled outside of the US, particularly in Europe.
However, when asked about a possible PayPal stablecoin, perhaps similar to the Facebook-designed Diem, da Ponte said that it is still too early to talk about it.
With respect to central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), da Ponte said he has met with central bankers from around the world, revealing that he believes it makes perfect sense for central banks to issue their own tokens. He further added:
“Sometimes we position the debate as CBDCs versus stablecoins, but it’s a bit of a fake debate. There is no trade-off. We think they will co-exist”.
Bitcoin withdrawals make PayPal a major player in the industry
The decision to allow cryptocurrency withdrawals and deposits via an integrated wallet within PayPal’s app was actually already highly anticipated, if not actually taken for granted at some point. In fact, the crypto functionalities introduced by PayPal at the end of last year were a huge success, so it would have been simply absurd to limit oneself to offering exchanges or the use for payments.
With this move PayPal could in fact become one of the world’s leading portals to the cryptocurrency sector for those approaching this new world for the first time.