Bitcoin Interview with Mr. Stéphane Abichaker:
Jalal Hasbini interviewed Mr. Stéphane Abichaker, Arabic Bitcoin specialist. The purpose of this interview was to generate awareness about cryptocurrencies, and Bitcoin in particular.
Jalal Hasbini asked Stéphane Abichaker to define what a cryptocurrency is: Stéphane Abichaker stated that it is a new form of currency created by anonymous individual(s) dubbed Satoshi Nakamoto in 2008, and is built on cryptography, and a chain of computer networks in order to create a digital asset.
Jalal Hasbini asked Stéphane Abichaker how things transpired since then: Stéphane Abichaker said that the first Bitcoin transaction was used to order pizza. Stéphane Abichaker also said that initially the Bitcoin was worth a few u.s. Cents, and has now reached a valuation of approximately 9000$ per coin.
Jalal Hasbini also inquired about a definition to Bitcoin and also asked if several cryptocurrencies other than Bitcoin can be used for transactions of all kinds. Stéphane Abichaker said that in 2020, there are more than 3000 cryptocurrencies on the market. Stéphane Abichaker asserted that Bitcoin is still the dominant cryptocurrency, and has a 55% market share due to it being a completely decentralized digital currency.
Jalal Hasbini then asked about the importance of bitcoin as an independent, decentralized authority and why it is regarded by some as a better alternative than fiat currency. Stéphane Abichaker opined that Bitcoin is evolving at a rapid pace and on a pro-bono basis, unlike fiat currency which is a piece of paper printed out of thin air by financial governing bodies, and has no intrinsic value.
Jalal Hasbini then inquired about the possibility of using bitcoin as a currency in Lebanon given the current economic crisis. Stéphane Abichaker stated that Bitcoin can be a useful asset depending on its perception by people, and that it actually is a safe haven asset compared to a fiat currency. Stéphane Abichaker also mentioned that Bitcoin can be also used as an efficient means of payment if carefully used, and in regards to Lebanon, to circumvent bureaucratic hassles imposed by local banks.
Jalal Hasbini then sought to find out if there is any third-party interference in regards to bitcoin transactions. Stéphane Abichaker asserted that there are no intermediaries, and it’s a very straightforward, send-and-receive type of transaction. Furthermore, Stéphane Abichaker said that Bitcoin payments have an estimated confirmation time of 60 mins, compared to two working days for banking transactions.
Jalal Hasbini then asked if Bitcoin exchanges can be easily conducted in Lebanon. Stéphane Abichaker stated that if Bitcoin operations were easy, its value would already be worth between $50000-$100000 per coin.
Jalal Hasbini inquired about banking institutions that are starting to invest in bitcoin. Stéphane Abichaker agreed that Banks are joining the Bitcoin revolution and also stated that up to two-thirds of newly created Bitcoins are bought by one hedge-fund.
Jalal Hasbini asked about the future of Bitcoin in general. Stéphane Abichaker stated that he is extremely optimistic about its prospect.