02 Feb 2021 · 1 min read

Colombian Banks to Work with Exchanges on Year-long Crypto Pilot

Colombian banks are set to form an unlikely alliance, with some of the nation’s biggest crypto exchanges set to work together on a cryptoasset transactions pilot.

Source: Adobe/promesaartstudio

Per Semana, the pilot will, in most cases see crypto exchanges join forces with a bank to test how financial institutions can use crypto to conduct transactions – and whether it can indeed speed payments and improve efficiency.

The pilot will take place within a newly constructed regulatory sandbox, the brainchild of the Financial Superintendence (Superintendencia Financiera or Superfinanciera), one of the nation’s top financial regulators.

The biggest crypto players have teamed with big-hitting banks, with Banco de Bogotá working with Bitso and Buda, while Bancolombia pairs with the Colombian branch of Gemini. Binance’s Colombian operations, meanwhile, will work with the Davivienda bank and a fintech firm named Powwi.

The neobank Movii will work with Panda and Bitpoint, while the financial services provider Coltefinanciera will team up with Obsidiam, and the digital assets firms Coink and Banexcoin will work together.

Some five other proposed partnerships were rejected by a selection body comprised of Financial Superintendence members, other financial regulators, and members of the presidential office.

The firms will begin on a year-long pilot, and the Superintendence warned that exchange partners “must perform due diligence when making decisions to buy and sell cryptoassets” in the sandbox, adding that the “high standards” used in a conventional bank needed to be applied to crypto-related dealings.

And the regulator added that the pilot did not affect the legal status of crypto in the nation, nor did it mean that banks could start pursuing crypto-related business outside the confines of the sandbox.

The plan for the sandbox was outlined last year in a presidential decree.
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