Development of cryptocurrency in the digital payment category may have influenced the cross-order remittances. The number of blockchain startups and other financial institutions are seeing this as an opportunity to leverage their business shortly.
To exploit this opportunity businesses have started making use of their existing colossal user base, like Facebook while others like Ripple are partnering with fellow financial institutions like Moneygram and Coinfirm to take their game to the next level.
Understanding cross-border remittance
According to a report from the World Bank, there seems to be $529 billion in 2018, which is the remittances from the middle and low-income nations – which is more than 10 percent in 2017. Also, it is expected to reach $550 billion in next few years, which is why fintech firms and blockchain startups are considering this as an opportunity to tap into and leverage the same – calling it the lowest hanging fruit.
The mere purpose of immigration gets nullified when the remittance rates and cross-border money transaction rates are outrageous. On average, to transfer $100 using traditional means other than the emerging ones like Ripple, it costs around $7, which is expensive.
Considering Asian and African immigrants in Europe, the US, and Gulf, they would need to send the money back to their family and dependants in a definite period. These remittance rates are actually hitting the expats hard, thus avoiding the actual benefit of having an income in foreign currency.
Leveraging the lowest hanging fruit
Financial institutions like MoneyGram, Paypal, or Western Union, are really locking these transaction rates quite high, which in turn is allowing blockchain startups to find an alternative to this traditional and inefficient means of remittance. That precisely is what Ripple is trying to do; the blockchain firm has a vision of creating a dent at global than just doing roadmap of features. It seems they are here to fight between 0 or 1, to either make the impact or accept the failure.
Cryptocurrency based solutions are working to provide a cost-effective approach to this existing cross-border remittance procedure. For example, consider PayPal, it charges a flat price of 2.9 percent and $0.30 for a single online transaction.
Not too long ago, a spokesperson from World Bank mentioned something about the global state of remittance and how fintech firms can make a significant impact in the future,
“Although geography plays a huge role, the cost is the biggest challenge to financial inclusion. This is both from the perspective of the service provider, in the sense that the costs to provide financial services to the abysmal (including rural dwellers) can be prohibitive. Also, from the perspective of the user of the service (for meager-income individuals and families), the cost of using financial services can be prohibitive.”
Ripple has already been researching on these cross-border remittance procedures and its planning to do it using the decentralized ledger technology (DLT) by partnering with banks and other required financial institutions.
Though there are enough rewards when blockchain startups leverage this lowest hanging fruit, it comes with a price. Moreover, this is how the Spokesperson continued,
“Aside from the cost, we shouldn’t undervalue the role that gender discrimination plays. The result of this is a large (9% in the developing world) gender gap between men’s access to finance and women’s access.”
“While employing cross-border remittance, its good to consider Anti-Money Laundering and aiding terrorism as well” added the Spokesperson.
The battle of fintechs: Libra vs. Ripple (XRP) vs. Visa
But according to Jamie Dimon, CEO of JPMorgan Chase, cryptocurrencies can’t overtake the relevancy of banks payment procedures; he believes banks have already built P2P, Zelle, and TCH with better real-time transaction methodology.
Facebook, with its recent Libra project, is trying to leverage its social media user base, to tap into this market while Ripple is already partnering with other financial institutions to stabilize its overall financial journey. Also, Libra could violate the precedence of sovereign fiat, thus diluting the financial powers of underdeveloped and developing countries.
This battle seems to have already begun between Libra and XRP, especially after Ripple’s partnership with MoneyGram. With MoneyGram’s liquidity and Ripple’s robust operating system, XRP could be more rigid. With ordinance and compliance comes perfection, which is why Ripple has also partnered with Coinfirm, to make XRP a better option in the market.
It is worth noting that SWIFT is also in this race with plans of employing DLT based global payment innovation (GPI) platform. So it seems, SWIFT is actually planning to leverage upon Ripple’s XRP using its GPI platform when there is a cross-border transaction.
Instead of making things centralized SWIFT might make use of Ripple’s partnership with various banks and financial institutions, to use Xrapid and XRP creating multiple loops. With the obstacles in the cross-border remittances, cost-effective approach with the fastest transaction methodology, and end-to-end protection will be the leader in this business.
Disclaimer: The presented information is subjected to market condition and may include the very own opinion of the author. Please do your ‘very own’ market research before making any investment in cryptocurrencies. Neither the writer nor the publication (TronWeekly.com) holds any responsibility for your financial loss.