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Chainalysis: the Latin American (LATAM) crypto landscape, Venezuela and Argentina pioneering digital resilience

According to Chainalysis’ latest report, in the realm of crypto, Latin America (LATAM) emerges as a dynamic landscape with unique traits, distinctive preferences, and notable examples of how digital assets can turn economic and political challenges into opportunities for the region’s inhabitants. 

The following analysis looks at the cryptocurrency ecosystems of two major countries in the region, Argentina and Venezuela, to shed light on how these nations have harnessed the unique utility of cryptocurrencies.

Latin America’s (LATAM) position on crypto: Chainalysys’ report

Before exploring these individual cases, it is critical to understand the overall crypto landscape in Latin America. 

This region, characterized by diverse economies and varied political landscapes, boasts the seventh largest cryptocurrency economy globally, after sub-Saharan Africa. 

In particular, it closely follows regions such as MENA, East Asia, and Eastern Europe in terms of cryptocurrency adoption and activity.

An interesting aspect of Latin America’s cryptocurrency engagement is its preference for centralized exchanges. 

Unlike other regions, Latin America shows a greater inclination toward these platforms. It also tends to favor decentralized options over institutional assets. 

Although Latin America’s crypto economy is smaller than others, its grassroots adoption is robust, with three countries ranking in the top 20 of the Global Crypto Adoption Index-Brazil, Argentina, and Mexico.

Latin America (LATAM) in Chainalysis: crypto struggle and adoption in Argentina

Argentina, a nation plagued by cyclical currency devaluation and economic problems, is a case in point for cryptocurrency adoption. 

The Argentine peso suffered a significant devaluation of about 51.6 percent in the year leading up to July 2023. 

In response, cryptocurrencies, particularly stable currencies, have emerged as a reliable refuge for Argentines seeking to preserve their savings amid hyperinflation and severe restrictions on foreign currency purchases. As a result, many choose to convert their salaries into stable currencies such as USDT or USDC to safeguard their assets.

In addition, cryptocurrencies offer a practical solution to the daily challenges Argentines face due to fluctuating prices and monetary instability. 

Lemon Cash, a cryptocurrency exchange based in Argentina, has introduced a debit card that allows users to make purchases using the cryptocurrencies they hold. This innovation has not only simplified everyday commerce, but also provided a lifeline for many during tough economic times.

Venezuela: cryptocurrency as a weapon against authoritarianism

Venezuela shares with Argentina the struggle against economic turmoil and currency devaluation, but it faces an additional challenge: an authoritarian and repressive regime led by Nicolás Maduro. This unique combination of economic hardship and political repression has resulted in a stimulating use case for cryptocurrencies.Faced with extreme hyperinflation rates exceeding one million percent, cryptocurrencies, particularly stablecoins, have enabled many Venezuelans to safeguard their assets. 

The correlation between the devaluation of the bolivar and the increase in cryptocurrency purchases is evident in the exchange order book data.

In addition, cryptocurrencies have played a key role in facilitating remittances to Venezuela, a country experiencing a massive exodus due to a complex humanitarian crisis. Stable currencies have become the preferred alternative for sending funds to loved ones back home.

But perhaps the most peculiar utility of cryptocurrency in Venezuela is its use as a tool of resistance against the oppressive regime. 

During the Covid crisis in 2020, cryptocurrencies enabled the Guaidó-led interim government to provide aid to doctors and nurses. By circumventing the regime’s control over the financial system, cryptocurrency wallets facilitated direct money transfers to health care workers, substantially impacting their lives and those of their caregivers.

Cryptocurrency also empowers democracy activists and freedom fighters in Venezuela and around the world, offering an alternative to overcome censorship and restrictions. It has the potential to be a powerful tool for change, provided it succeeds in reducing its dependence on fixed-rate currency in authoritarian countries.


Venezuela’s adoption of cryptocurrency reminds us of the potential of this nascent technology in promoting freedom and improving the quality of life in regions most in need of economic stability and political liberation.

In conclusion, Latin America’s cryptocurrency landscape is a testament to the adaptability of digital assets in the face of diverse challenges, and Argentina and Venezuela stand out as prime examples of how cryptocurrencies can offer relief and power in unique ways. The region continues to evolve in the cryptocurrency space, and the world is watching with great interest.