On 8th August, NEM broadcast an interview of Akasha Indream, NEM’s Australian Communications Lead in conversation with Gordon Christian, the NEM’s Queensland Regional Head. During the interview, the NEM leads discussed Australia’s first ever cryptocurrency hub, 1770, Agnes Water which is situated on the Queensland coast. Gordon is the visionary behind the daring project.
Gordon Christian stated that the extraordinary thing about 1770 at the moment is that NEM was fortunate enough to partner with TravelByBit to roll out Australia’s first digital currency town. The NEM regional team has led the way not just in Australia but in the world at large in successfully bringing mass adoption of cryptocurrencies to one concentrated place. He then added:
“Anyone that wants to spend their cryptocurrency, can come to Agnes Water at 1770 and have a full travel experience just by using digital currency.”
The TravelByBit payment system is a point of sale system which enables consumers to use cryptocurrencies for payments throughout the city of 1770. There are about 35 businesses who are actively accepting cryptocurrencies as payment.
Christian further confirmed that customers can either book through their travel agency using cryptocurrencies or use a currency exchange system at a local store using their phone. This would transfer the customer’s cryptocurrency into fiat at the point of sale. In terms of the locals accepting the digital currency mode of payment, Gordon said:
“When we introduced the idea of this mode of payment and how it as going to bring more tourism to our area, the local stakeholders and retailers felt that it was a great idea from the start.”
He further added:
“So within a short period we had about 10 people and the next thing we knew, there were around 20 people. It didn’t take much longer for people to get on board with the idea.”
Christian believes that through this step, 1770 is digitally ready. He stated that a number of initiatives are being set up to get tourists and locals involved in blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies. NEM is in talks with local schools that would benefit from the collaboration in terms of educating the youngsters about the cryptocurrency space.
Christian concluded by saying:
“I think it is interesting to note that this place has opened up lots of opportunities. It goes to show that even a a small regional town in Queensland can be in the blockchain business. It’s pretty. This means that something is growing, something that has global connection and impact is growing.”
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