Cuba’s Bitcoin Revolution – Bitcoin Magazine: Bitcoin News, Articles, Charts, and Guides


Lucia is a 30-year-old medical worker and Bitcoin user living in Matanzas, a city of about 150,000 people sitting about 50 miles east of Havana on Cuba’s northern coast. Named after an aboriginal rebellion against Spanish colonizers, the word “matanzas” literally translates to “slaughter.” The settlement later turned into a 19th-century epicenter of slavery and sugar plantations. Today, like all Cuban cities, it is ground zero for a financial and human crisis.

The Cuban people are suffering their worst economic struggle since the early 1990s, when the Soviet Union collapsed and the regime lost its main lifeline. At the time, longtime dictator Fidel Castro told citizens they needed to unite together to get through a “Special Period.” The era was marked by food shortages, blackouts, thousands fleeing to Florida on risky rafts and a spectacular devaluation of the Soviet ruble-pegged peso. Between 1991 and 1994 the Cuban economy contracted by 35% and quality of life deteriorated dramatically.

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