Crypto Cambodia

I sit here this morning, sipping coffee, feet propped up on my desk, imagining how great it would be if a cryptocurrency creator approached a frontier market somewhere and teamed up with them to turn the currency market on its head. Imagine the implications if an innovation-starved country took the steps to allow a cryptocurrency to compete side-by-side with their own sovereign fiat currency. Hell, take it a step further… imagine a country taking the bold initiative to not only allow cryptocurrencies to compete, but for gold and silver to join in on the fun, too.


Certainly an unintended consequence might be that this country could potentially rob Silicon Valley of some of their youngest and brightest talent—a giant sucking sound heard around the world. Moreover, imagine an “economic zone” set up not for banks or financial services, but for geeks? Now that would be something truly revolutionary. Alas, the coffee begins its intended effect and as I begin my day proper this idea slowly drifts back into “what if” territory in the back of my mind…

But wait a second. What’s this I’m reading? It appears that the founders of Blackcoin have plans to introduce two terminals in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, this year. The Phnom Penh Post is reporting that Blackcoin is in talks with some “currency traders” there, and plan to put one in Central Market and one in Tuol Tompuong.

Ok, this might not be that close to my imagining of a “cryptozone,” but it’s a damn fine start.

It has been reported that the officials at Blackcoin have purchased two machines from Coinkite in Canada. One will be used to make retail payments, and the other will be used as a money changer, buying and selling U.S. dollars vs. Blackcoin. Also reported is that Blackcoin plans to bring more terminals to the country’s capital in the near future.

The National Bank of Cambodia (NBC) announced on April 7 that cryptocurrencies would not be recognized as legal tender due to the absence of any regulation.

Well, I never imagined anything along these lines would be easy. I am, however, somewhat optimistic that petitioning the Cambodian government regarding cryptocurrencies will be considerably easier than anything “back home” (wherever that may be for you). So who knows, maybe one day relatively soon we’ll be seeing a cryptocurrency competing in a frontier, or even an emerging, market. Its mere existence “warming up” the rest of the world to the idea. And to the possibilities.

Maybe not so unfathomable after all, I suspect, given the amount of real/perceived mischievousness taking place inside the Western banking system.