The comparison between the Argentine peso and bitcoin is complex and depends on several factors. Historically, the Argentine peso has experienced high levels of inflation and has lost value against other currencies. Bitcoin, on the other hand, is known for its volatility, which means that its value can fluctuate significantly over short periods. In terms of stability, neither option is ideal. The Argentine peso is the legal tender in Argentina and is widely accepted within the country for everyday transactions. But it is known that, for operations involving large sums of money such as the purchase and sale of real estate, this local currency does not work. Bitcoin, on the other hand, is a decentralized cryptocurrency that is not backed by any government and its acceptance may vary depending on the location and policies of the merchants. So, is bitcoin or the Argentine Peso money? From BAG -blockchain technology company that offers tools specially designed for art and culture- , the CEO Martín González , remarks that this debate is not very relevant. “The traditional conception considers that money should serve as a medium of exchange, a unit of account and a store of value. Bitcoin’s volatility raises doubts and debates about compliance with these requirements. Personally, I think that it does not make much sense to question whether bitcoin is money or not because its main attribute is that of safeguarding value and the incentives of the protocol go in that direction and not in using it in a daily transactional way. In fact, I think it is much more powerful as a credit asset than as money”, he says. And when talking about the Argentine peso, he says: “If we refer to the strict definition, it is clear that the Argentine peso does not meet the requirement of being a store of value (since 1992 it has reduced its value by 99.7%). . As it is the legal tender in the country, its use is mandatory for the conclusion of contracts and the exchange of goods and services, so whether it is money or not is a discussion without much importance from a semantic point of view. But then, could the peso be replaced with bitcoin? The answer is not clear. But some experts offer us points of view that can serve to clarify the panorama. From Koibanx -a leading company in financial tokenization using blockchain technology- , CEO Leo Elduayén explains:  Although it can be considered as a means of exchange, it is important to take into account the significant differences between bitcoin and fiat currencies. We bitcoiners define ourselves as ‘holders’, that is, we do not sell our bitcoins. We have a very big tendency to take refuge in bitcoin and more and more people do it. From that conceptualization, added to the evolution of other technologies that have surpassed bitcoin when it comes to scaling and scheduling transactions, bitcoin will occupy this space of ‘Fly to quality’ for many more the financial world not only crypto, but traditional. This is particularly true and useful for the Argentine market, but just as valid for the world market”.

What are the main differences between the two?

  • The Argentine peso is subject to the control and regulation of the Argentine government , which can have advantages and disadvantages in terms of stability and economic control. Bitcoin, on the other hand, is a decentralized digital currency that operates independently of governments and financial institutions, which can provide some protection against government intervention, but can also present regulatory challenges.
  • On the other hand, the Argentine currency is more liquid in the context of its territory, since it is widely used for daily transactions and has an established financial infrastructure. Bitcoin is less liquid in terms of its widespread acceptance and the availability of places where it can be used directly, but it allows for international transactions that the peso would not.
Regarding the first point, Elduayén reflects, “Although the ideology that promoted the start of the crypto world had a markedly anti-banking bias, currently it is seen that there are more and more synergies between the participants of the two sectors . For this reason, the integration of the best of both worlds is beginning to be noticed with banks and technology companies operating under the guarantees of the regulatory framework of the traditional banking sector and applying the innovation that this merger brings. An example are the stablecoins that show the union of what the traditional financial world and the crypto ecosystem are. Koibanx was one of the companies that was present in the implementation of bitcoin and blockchain infrastructure for the Government of El Salvador. “This has taught us a lot about what are the advantages and disadvantages of a country adopting cryptocurrencies and has opened the door for us to understand the different ways and nuances to adopt it” , stressed the CEO of the firm. “Save for the particularities of El Salvador, which is a country that has the dollar as legal tender and therefore a relatively low opportunity cost (at least compared to countries whose monetary issue depends on themselves), we do believe that all Countries and economies would benefit from the inclusion of cryptocurrencies and Blockchain technology within their financial infrastructure” , says Elduayén. However, he says that converting bitcoin into legal tender is probably not the best path for all countries, but ” we may create a CBDC (Central Bank Digital Currency) or promote the infrastructure for the national currency to be digitize and become interoperable with cryptocurrencies.” “Or maybe it does not come from the currency side, but from the tokenization side (digitally representing real-world assets on the Blockchain) so that its exchange and dynamism is the best option (eg: “Blockchainize” the stock market )” , he thinks. For his part, Guillermo Escudero, Regional Manager of Argentina and Strategic Alliances of Cryptomarket -cryptocurrency exchange platform-, thinks that it is difficult to consider bitcoin as “money” and also the Argentine peso, since they do not meet a requirement: “to be store of value”. Then he adds: “We can discuss the concept of bitcoin as a value, since it is important to differentiate between price and value . What we can find in this new technology like bitcoin is that it has value , not only because of its global and accepted use case, but also because of its disruption regarding its governance and form of issuance.-known as mining- which involves the participation of several computers that compete to solve a puzzle in order to earn a certain amount of bitcoin in exchange for writing a block containing the transactions of the last 10 minutes, and shares it with the rest of the participants, leaving said movements written on the blockchain and making this automatically reflected in the entire community of participants and there being a consensus in the global Bitcoin system”. From Bitwage -the pioneer platform for payment of fees in cryptocurrencies and digital dollars most chosen by workers, freelancers and service exporters- , Ramiro Raposo, who works as VP of Growth , emphasizes his perspective: “Bitcoin is already considered a kind of money for many people, and used as a means of exchange and a way to preserve the value of our money. I don’t know if it will be accepted worldwide like the dollar is today, I’m not sure about that since bitcoin’s problem is its volatility, which makes it difficult to use as a stable medium of exchange”. “Although the Argentine peso is more volatile and at times makes us think that at any moment this currency will no longer serve us, the reality is that it continues to be used as a means of exchanging goods. It is a very complicated concept, since this currency is instilled by a government towards the people and not the other way around, as in the case of bitcoin”. And then he ends: “Today, stablecoins are widely used as a form of money. Much demand is being seen for these such as the DAI or the USDT, which is why many governments are already investigating to create their own digital currencies. What I have no doubt about is that cryptocurrencies are here to stay”.


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