A 20-year-old refugee escaped Ukraine with only Bitcoin on his pen drive as his only means of payment. Many Ukrainian rely on crypto to enable them to pass European borders.
According to Fadey, who spoke to CNBC, Many people have been left stranded due to problems with bank transactions and long ATM lines. Fadey, on the other hand, was able to make a P2P Bitcoin deal with a friend for $600 in Polish currency. The money was subsequently utilized to purchase a bus ticket to Poland.
“I couldn’t withdraw cash at all, because the queues to ATMs were so long, and I couldn’t wait that much time.”
Decentralization Strengthens People In Difficult Moments
This emphasizes a statement made early in the war: decentralized resources can potentially help and strengthen displaced persons fleeing war. All that is required when the centralized system breaks down is a simple internet connection and a piece of paper with a seed phrase. Even those who could withdraw fiat currency via ATMs were limited to $33 per transaction, which does not apply to crypto.
Ukraine already has Europe’s highest cryptocurrency adoption rate, which is currently supporting many of its citizens in surviving. Fadey carried $2000 on his pen drive, which is just under half of his life savings. Hundreds of thousands of people like Fadey exist among the crypto whales we study and read about. A few thousand dollars can mean the difference between life and death for some people.
Ukraine’s government is also embracing cryptocurrency. It has received millions of dollars in cryptocurrency donations from all across the world and has just made crypto legal. Other countries should now understand how crypto can help their citizens in times of disaster, which will hopefully drive greater adoption.
Those fleeing the Russian invasion have been able to access their funds after they are safe thanks to Bitcoin ATMs in border nations. More Bitcoin ATMs would be excellent, however, their existence is currently in doubt after being banned in the United Kingdom last week.
Beyond the borders, Portugal is a pioneer in assisting Ukrainians in relocating. The country, which has no capital gains tax on cryptocurrency, welcomes refugees, including crypto employees from firms like NEAR. Because Portugal and Ukraine are both hotbeds of cryptocurrency development, there’s a natural fit for any Ukrainian crypto companies wishing to relocate due to the conflict.
With over 3.5 million refugees traveling across Europe from Ukraine, access to funds is a major issue. Cryptocurrency isn’t only an investment tool for individuals looking to beat the stock market. Cryptocurrency is providing lifelines to millions of individuals all around the world during some of the most difficult times. Decentralization does not only safeguards our assets; it also saves the lives of people who rely on it when they are most in need.