Latin American banking service provider Bantotal is partnering with Bitex for cross-border payments using bitcoin blockchain, a media report said.
Bitex will bridge national and regional banks to convert fiat currency into bitcoin — and then back to fiat. Bitex Chief Marketing Officer Manuel Beaudroit describes it as ‘peer to peer banking’. Essentially, the user is only expected to transfer money. Bitex will do the purchase and transfer of bitcoin on behalf of the user.
For Bantotal clients, the partnership will allow them to access Bitex services that Bantotal offers through BDevelopers programme. Using this technology banks will gain access to an API. They will be able to control the whole cross-border payment process on the bitcoin blockchain, Beaudroit said.
Bitex’s Beaudroit said integrating Bitex into Bantotal programme is a significant step in using blockchain technology in banking services.
Bantotal based in Uruguay offers services to 60 different financial institutions across 14 countries. A Bantotal spokesperson said that nearly 20 million people use its money management services.
Using Bitex, the fees for the cross-border payments will be up to five times cheaper than international wire transfers. The estimated time for cross-border transactions in Latin America can easily take up to 96 hours, depending on the bank branch and financial intermediaries used.
Such partnerships are being established today because financial institutions are realising the significance of digital assets and distributed ledger technology for international payments. This is especially true with cross-border payments becoming an expensive option for users.