Business & Economy

Bitcoin conference comes to Miami for 2nd year, drawing thousands

Miami, Apr 6 (EFE).- The world of cryptocurrencies on Wednesday will hold its four-day Bitcoin 2022 conference in Miami Beach where business will be conducted, people can learn about the latest developments in the sector, talks and seminars will be given and the digital “coin” will become better known to the general public.

The president of El Salvador, Nayib Bukele, the first world leader to make Bitcoin a legal tender in his country, will participate in the event on Thursdy, but the Salvadoran President’s Office confirmed to EFE that Bukele will only address the conclave from his homeland and will be represented at the in-person event by his country’s envoy to the US, Milena Mayorga.

Attending the kickoff event on Wednesday for the conference – now in its fourth year and expecting to attract more than 35,000 people – was Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, who in his speech lobbied for “integrating” virtual currencies into all aspects of society “this year.”

“Together we’ll create a world where everyone has a chance to live in peace, with dignity and freedom,” said Suarez after emphasizing that what in the medium term cryptocurrencies could mean for the Americas and the role Miami can play in that evolution.

As one of the US mayors most in favor of cryptocurrencies, Suarez said that Miami is styling itself as the world capital of decentralization.

The Miami Mayor’s Office in 2021 associated itself with CityCoin, an organization that facilitates the launching of digital securities to back municipalities, and in the process launched Miami Coin.

Part of the funds that the city receives from its operations with the digital currency will be placed into an assistance fund for residents who have trouble paying their rent.

The digital currencies of CityCoin generate profits via the process known as “staking,” which involves earning rewards for holding a particular crypto-asset for a period of time and is simply the process of devoting assets to a blockchain network in exchange for compensation.

In the case of CityCoin, about 30 percent of the revenues go into the municipal treasury and 70 percent are distributed among people who use their computers to process other people’s transactions, called “miners.”

The Miami Beach event began with the presentation of the “Miami Bull,” a lifesize sculpture weighing more than 1,300 kilograms (2,860 pounds) resembling the famous sculpture that has become the symbol of Wall Street. The sculpture will be displayed in the coming days outside the Convention Center and will later set up on Miami Dade College’s Wolfson Campus.

The work reflects Miami’s position within the cryptocurrency universe and the overall world financial scenario, where in 2021 new companies using blockchain technology obtained more than $760 million in financing, roughly the same figure as for Los Angeles, according to a report by the CB Insights consulting firm.

Organized by Bitcoin magazine and the brands surrounding Bitcoin Inc., the No. 1 aim of the conference is to accelerate the use of Bitcoin, already the world’s most popular cryptocurrency, valued at about $44,000 per coin.

The event is more than a conference, however, since it will also feature music, an art gallery and a trade fair with more than 200 firms from the Bitcoin world as exhibitors, along with a multitude of parallel events.

The industry is a great opportunity for everyone, especially for low-income families and developing countries, Daniel, one of the conference attendees, told EFE.

Meanwhile, Benjamin Bean said he was not worried about Bitcoin’s decline in value since the beginning of the year, and into which he has invested his money, given that he’s looking long-term and he told EFE that from an annual perspective, Bitcoin always tends to rise in value.

The New Zealander heads a company that operates in the virtual currency space and he flew directly to Miami from his homeland to meet with partners and investors at Bitcoin 2022.

Helena Barr, with Banking Circle, a financing firm working with Fintech, did the same thing, flying in from London and telling EFE that recently things are slowly moving into the cryptocurrency space.

Among the main speakers, Bitcoin 2022 will feature Jordan Peterson, the controversial Canadian psychologist and author, as well as North Korean activist Yeonmi Park, who says that cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin could help empower North Koreans and allow them to “take back” power from their government.

The art gallery this year, Bitcoin Renaissance, will auction more than 90 art objects and has a total of more than 250 items for sale, including paintings, sculptures and non-fungible tokens, the organization said.

EFE Lce/ar/lll/bp

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