MasterCard has announced that it will enable support for cryptocurrencies, making MasterCard the latest mainstream banking company to endorse crypto.
As a result, 30 million merchants will be eligible to make payments and sell goods in exchange for various cryptocurrencies.
MasterCard hopes to catch the trend as customers migrate to digital currencies and be one of the first companies to offer a quality product.
“It’s about choice. MasterCard isn’t here to recommend you start using cryptocurrencies. But we are here to enable customers, merchants and businesses to move digital value”, the company has said in a statement.
MasterCard has not said which specific cryptocurrencies will be listed on the service, but this will come later in 2021.
The company is also planning to uphold rigorous KYC and AML standards and subject digital currency owners to the same due diligence practice as FIAT owners.
MasterCard is also looking into the expansion of central bank digital currency’s (CBDC) around the world, a process that seems inevitable now that the European Central Bank is planning to debut its own digital euro, and China is already in late-stage trials of its e-yuan.
The decision to go full-on with cryptocurrencies is not a whim, and the company has already been exploring a distributed ledger technology. Far more importantly, cryptocurrencies are gaining more mainstream momentum and are more often treated as legitimate currencies with institutional investors showing interest.
First PayPal, then Tesla, and MasterCard is joining a list of heavyweights that are all interested in keeping cryptocurrencies alive and prospering. Even Apple could be joining sooner or later, granting access to 1.6 billion devices to various crypto operations.
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