New Zealand’s “Bitcoin bottleneck” is seeing consumers “embrace” Blockchain while banks dither on regulation.
According to reports by local news outlet Stuff, consumers left out in the cold by the country’s troubling regulatory climate are fast feeling the ‘FOMO’ - or ‘fear of missing out’ - effect.
“We are still seeing far more demand that we can service,” Dave Seyb, CEO of Kiwi Bitcoin exchange NZBCX, told the publication last week, "with the bottleneck still being the banking situation."
"Bitcoin markets across the world have seen huge influxes of new consumers in 2017 as non-technical users come on board."
At the same time, New Zealand’s financial players have seemingly sought to halt the phenomenon, with one of its first-ever exchanges bitNZ shutting down this year after its bank refused to service its accounts any longer.
As of this month, banks "are still shutting down some accounts,” CEO of newcomer exchange Dasset Stephen Macaskill continued, with Stuff adding there is nonetheless now a consensus that they must "change their internal policies to accept this new industry.”
Meanwhile, the country’s startup scene is actively pursuing Blockchain solutions as a way to get local industry acquainted with innovative technologies, without falling foul of legacy gatekeepers.
"Users shouldn't really need to think about the Blockchain per se," Aaron McDonald, CEO of app hub Centrality explained, "just like most people don't understand how the Internet actually works, or how a cloud service actually works."
It’s not only average investors who’ve felt the sting from New Zealand’s unwieldy approach to cryptocurrency. Entrepreneur Kim Dotcom regularly brings the situation to international attention, as he struggles to clear his name following accusations of copyright fraud from lawmakers.
Here's an idea: Finland doesn't have a New Zealand Embassy. Tweet at President @niinisto to make me Ambassador and I'll gladly represent ???— Kim Dotcom (@KimDotcom) October 5, 2017