Towerbank’s announcement is official and it arrives at a historic time of crypto excitement for Panama, where the bank is located.
Towerbank is one of Panama’s top 30 financial institutions. During a meeting organized by the Panamanian Chamber of Digital Commerce and Blockchain, its Product Vice President Gabriel Campa said the bank is considering the best way to use Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies.
Towerbank is the first bank in Latin America to publicly announce something like this. “It’s worth sharing” Cristóbal Pereira, CEO of Latam Tech and organizer of the Latam Blockchain Summit, wrote on Twitter.
The executive added that as part of their study, the bank is launching a crypto-Friendly account to approach cryptocurrency users in Panama.
To put it simply, the Bank will open up to cryptocurrencies. That’s the gist of the Vice President’s words during the meeting sponsored by the local Chamber of Commerce, suggesting that customers use crypto-friendly accounts and further encouraging hassle-free transactions and conversions to fiat.
“We want to work with you and find out what we can create to help you to be part of this new world [of cryptocurrencies],” Campa said to applause from the audience.
Acá en Panamá 🇵🇦 en #meetup con @Towerbank y anuncian que son #crypto friendly, y pueden venir a abrir cuentas y depositar retiros desde exchanges sin miedo… primer banco en Latam que públicamente anuncia esto! Digno de compartir! pic.twitter.com/mVEKFfI8Uf— Cristobal Pereira (@cristpereirag) May 26, 2022
“Here in Panama in #meetup with @Towerbank and they announce that they are #crypto friendly, and they can come to open accounts and deposit withdrawals from exchanges without fear… the first bank in Latam that publicly announces this! Worth sharing!”
Panama is trying to take cryptocurrencies seriously, partly to disengage from the U.S. dollar, which is widely used in the country. ID, phone number, email, work activity, income, and residence will be the requirements for opening a cryptocurrency account with the bank.
Campa added that to ensure the protection of its customers and because of the financial risk that the use of cryptocurrencies in banking can pose, customers are required to notify the bank of the addresses they use to trade crypto assets.
A similar measure is also applied by cryptocurrency exchanges and other service providers that are required to comply with local regulations. However, these guidelines are being questioned by some community members who point out that they are detrimental to privacy. Also, through Crypto-Friendly accounts, users can only make transactions up to $5,000 per month.
The institution motivates these requirements with the inherent risk that cryptocurrency use would bring with it in banking to the mandatory wallet census.
Clearly, the important players in finance are beginning to realize that the use of cryptocurrencies is becoming a reality; crypto is evolving and worldwide adoption is ongoing, despite the inherent risks.
Cryptocurrency exchanges are becoming a fast-moving industry, especially in those countries where foreign currencies are widely adopted, from which, however, they cannot really benefit. And Panama, like El Salvador, is an example of modern evolution for banks that are beginning to become bitcoin-friendly and understand how the technology itself works.
Towerbank is being a pioneer and it is possible that soon other financial institutions will begin to upgrade and figure out how to facilitate transactions for cryptocurrency users. Especially now, as the number of people wanting to transact with cryptocurrencies has increased in Panama in recent months.