Coinbase, the popular cryptocurrency exchange, held an open house where the CEO, Brain Armstrong, updated the community on Coinbase’s “mission, vision, and strategy”.
During the talk, Armstrong emphasised the values he believes Coinbase stands on. Three years after its launch, Coinbase now stands at a prominent position as a widely-used financial exchange, and it is this which will help spread engagement with an “open financial system”, according to the CEO.
Coinbase believes that cryptocurrency is the mechanism through which economic freedom can be promoted. Its decentralised and digital nature has always made crypto providers believe that it is the solution to improving financial inclusion for the unbanked and excluded.
Armstrong believes that Coinbase has the potential to achieve these goals by disseminating blockchain technology in financial services globally. In his talk, he spoke about his big dreams of changing “the economic freedom of the entire world”, which he truly believes Coinbase can achieve.
US Senate Sceptical
The role that cryptocurrency can play in improving financial inclusion was a hot topic at a US Senate hearing earlier this week.
The hearing, titled “Examining Regulatory Frameworks for Digital Currencies and Blockchain” featured testimonies from Circle CEO Jeremy Allaire, a law professor from the University of California Irvine: Mehrsa Baradaran, and a specialist in international trade and finance: Rebecca M. Nelson.
Many Senators, including Sen. Brian Schatz, seemed unconvinced that blockchain technology can be used to improve financial inclusion, as demonstrated by Allaire in his testimony. In a cutting statement, Schatz told Allaire:
“I don’t doubt the potential for this tech, I just don’t think it’s going to bank low income communities and I don’t think you’ve persuaded anyone here that it’s going to do that.”
These sentiments were echoed by Baradaran, the law professor from UC Irvine. In her testimony, she explained that the inefficiencies, inequalities, and lack of access present in the current financial and banking sector of the United States cannot be addressed through blockchain and needed targeted policy intervention.