Bitcoin wallet Caricoin Ltd. that launched its first mobile money wallet to Caribbean users in June, has announced that it is in talks with Bank of Jamaica in order to set up first licensed bitcoin exchange in Jamaica.
According to the official post, the talk between the central bank and Caricoin has signaled that any approval is likely to come within the frame of mobile-money system. Karsten Becker, Caricoin’s adviser on Caribbean regulatory told Gleaner Business that the company is much interested in setting up operations in Jamaica. He also mentioned that Caricoin’s platform sees Jamaica as a key place since some investors are Jamaicans.
“We realize that there is a great need in Jamaica specifically for something that can cater to the unbanked and that open up e-commerce to the average small business,” he said.
Caricoin is currently preparing documents to present to Bank of Jamaica in order to show their sandbox approach towards delivering new technology. Adopting to the sandbox approach would allow startups and other firms to operate instead of undergoing a complex licensing process.
“We have had some exploratory discussions with them, talking about the regulatory framework and the process that would have to be engaged in order for them to secure approval so they can offer the service,” Livingston Morrison, Jamaican central bank deputy governor in charge of technology said.
The company injected around US$50,000 worth of free bitcoins into the system during the pilot, which was deemed a success in which, persons from Turks & Caicos Islands to Barbados and Trinidad used the platform and spent their digital money on mobile top-ups and online shopping among others.
“We have opted not to integrate into banking in the Caribbean as yet while we work with the Bank Of Jamaica to figure out how to move forward” Becker stated.
Last month, Caricoin announced its partnership with airtime merchant Bitrefill to integrate bitcoin mobile top-up functionality to its mobile wallet.