Several people on this forum have commented on the incredible possibilities for bitUSD in non-US markets. Argentina has been talked about a lot because of the unique economic situation in that country, which I'll talk about a bit here. I know that there are several other countries where conditions are similar. I'm starting this thread because I know more about Argentina than any other country, and I think it will be useful to have a specific discussion of this on its own thread.
MeTHoDx, Empirical1.1, donkeypong, and several others have mentioned how bitUSD could really thrive in any country where demand for USD is high, but supply is low. This is exactly the situation in Argentina.
In 2001, Argentina went through the worst economic crisis in its history. The peso crashed, as did the entire economy. Ever since then, the people of Argentina have turned to USD as a safe store of value for their wealth. Even though the country has made some slow progress in terms of economic recovery, the peso continues to fluctuate in value too much to be safe for saving. In addition, people are still disillusioned by what happened in 2001-- bank accounts were frozen and people lots tons of money. Argentines realize that this could very well happen again, especially given their recent default and the failure of the country to make true economic progress in the years since the crash. To add insult to injury, the Argentine government has imposed restrictions of the amount of USD that an individual can buy (something like 20% of personal income, when I was there). As we all know, prohibition rarely works, so the result has been the creation of a HUGE black market in Argentina for the buying and selling of USD.
Here's how it works. The government has created a somewhat arbitrary exchange rate for USD-Argentine pesos-- something around 8.5 pesos per dollar. If you're converting pesos to dollars this works in your favor, but you can only convert a certain amount. On the other hand, you have the black market (also called Blue Dolar, or Dolar Paralelo). This rate currently sits around 14.5 pesos per dollar. It is impossible to state the influence that this exchange rate has on the country. In general, Argentine people think A LOT in terms of dollars. The black market exchange rate is published in the newspapers every morning. You can walk down certain streets and hear tons of people shouting, offering black market exchanges. Policemen stand by and do nothing. Yes, it is officially illegal, but EVERYONE does it.
This is where bitUSD comes in. If you google "Bitcoin Argentina," you will see that there is a lot of buzz about the possibilities for the technology there. People in Argentina are distrustful and disillusioned with their government, with good reason. The government lies about the rate of inflation, and has done little to alleviate the economic plight of its citizens. Even if the government were to propose a solution to the problem, people would not trust it. Because of that, the buzz around cryptocurrencies is sizeable. The problem with bitcoin is that it does not currently offer a solution. Most people in Argentina are looking for a safe store of value for their wealth. They don't save in pesos because they are too volatile. Why would they save in bitcoin, which is too volatile as well? bitUSD offers the perfect solution. It is a SAFE store of value, directly pegged to a currency they KNOW and TRUST. And to make things even better, it offers an incredible yield. It allows them all of the safety of saving in USD, but they get an additional yield, plus the increased security of not having to literally put cash into a mattress to save.
While the majority of Argentines are looking to safely save money, I think that bitUSD, with a little time, could become the preferred method of payment, as well. Yes, things in Argentina are priced in pesos, but as I mentioned before, people there THINK in dollars. It would not be a hard transition for them. What we need to discuss are the best ways of forming partnerships with companies currently working in that sphere in Argentina. Bitpagos is the huge one- they're currently working with over 8,000 merchants to accept bitcoin as payment in Argentina. We need to help them see why bitUSD is a much better option than bitcoin, both for the people of Argentina and for these companies. A few of us have been talking about possible ways to reach out to BitPagos and other companies, but let's get some more feedback from the general community.
Let's use this thread to brainstorm some ideas. Thanks for your input!