How Cryptocurrency Is Helping Ukraine


How Cryptocurrency Is Helping Ukraine

Last Update: 2022-05-31

How Cryptocurrency Is Helping Ukraine

Critics have claimed that cryptocurrency will help Russia evade sanctions, or at best that it’s of no use to Ukrainians. In fact, it’s proving to be a powerful tool to help them.

I’ve worked in the blockchain industry for four years, and I’m Ukrainian. I grew up and attended university in Kharkiv, the second-largest city in Ukraine and one of the hardest-hit by Russian bombs. I’m one of several organizers of Unchain Fund, a crypto fundraising project dedicated to relief in Ukraine that has raised more than $6.9 million so far, as well as Away from Ukraine, an information network for displaced Ukrainians.

Crypto donations to Ukraine since the invasion total almost $100 million. Blockchain networks are global and settle transactions in minutes, while the legacy banking system takes three days to settle a cross-border transaction. Many crypto donations went directly to wallets held by the Ukrainian government via the Ministry of Digital Transformation. Deputy Minister Alex Bornyakov said last week that 40% of the vendors Kyiv is working with have accepted payment in cryptocurrency, and crypto donations have been “essential.” He noted that since “the national bank is not really operating, crypto is helping to perform fast transfers, to make it very quick and get results almost immediately.”

Crypto donations are also making a difference for Ukrainians, both in and out of the country. Ukraine’s banking system is hardly operating, but the major crypto exchanges are available 24/7 from a phone or computer.


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