It's been over ten months since Ken Takahashi began an online petition through Change.org, the goal? To make XRP the official cryptocurrency of the upcoming Tokyo Olympic Games. As of today, the petition has reached over 5,200 signatures, and edging closer to its 7,500 goal.
Breaking Through Milestones
From the moment that it was created, the petition managed to pick up 500 signatures with a good degree of speed, this then jumped from 500 to 1,000 signatures in less than three days. This is according . to Takahashi, the campaign's organiser and resident of Japan, through the petition's page. In less than a day after this update, it managed to hit 1,500.
A Unifying Kind Of Cryptocurrency For Ease Of Use
One of the main reasons for why Takahashi started the petition was in order to try and solve the logistical issues that would arise with so many international visitors pouring into the country that are otherwise unfamiliar with using Japan's native fiat currency, the Yen.
This was very much an issue that was left otherwise unresolved for those flocking to Brazil for the Rio Olympics in 2016, and it's a question Japan needs to answer; especially since people will be swarming to Tokyo from all across the world, all to witness, cover or participate in the games to some capacity.
And what is the one thing that all of these people need to do? Buy things, as Takahashi points out.
“As tourists stream into the country, demand for the local currency skyrockets, causing long lines at currency exchanges, as seen at past events like Beijing 2008 and Rio de Janeiro 2016. Confusing exchange rates and language barriers further complicate the problem.”
Out of the cryptocurrencies out there, he chose XRP due in large part to the ease at which it is able to facilitate its XRapid product commercially earlier in the week and hopes to provide a more efficient alternative to the current, more commonly used SWIFT function that is used for international transactions.
When XRP based transfers were tested in the act of sending funds between the United States and Mexico, it demonstrated wait times could be cut down to minutes, while the associated costs were exponentially lower than sending money across borders in a conventional way. Takahashi states that a single cryptocurrency, which is easily convertable into fiat, while also being immediately easy for users to take advantage of, would ease congestion and friction for those coming to Japan to attend the Olympic events.
This is not to mention the fact that travelers would be able to avoid the usually extortionate fees that they would incur through withdrawing funds from overseas. The more easily people can access their funds and convert them to local currency, the more easily they can spend it there.
Takahashi's petition aims to raise over 7,500 signatures before he goes on to send it to the Olympic National Committee. Ripple Labs has also been tagged on the petition page.