Hong Kong-based Bitspark Limited joined forces with PT Artabit Indonesia (ArtaBit) to provide a remittances service for Indonesian workers in Hong Kong who intend to send their money back to Indonesia. Similar to what Bitspark has done in the Philippines, the service will utilize bitcoin as its mean of cheap electronic transfer.
Prior to the service, remittances have always been done through bank transfer or telcos, though the cost is nowhere cheap. Thus, the service relies on bitcoin, an advanced payment method which is claimed to reduce the cost of services since it cuts the number of intermediaries and system complexities. Unfortunately, the risks of going with this method would be fully ours, as the Bank of Indonesia has yet announced it as one of legitimate payment methods in Indonesia.
The remittance process that this service holds is pretty simple. ArtaBit has provided users with a Remit page where they may input the amount of money they want to transfer in Rupiah, and ArtaBit will automatically convert the amount into Bitcoin. After filling out the recipient’s name and address, senders may choose whether they want the money to be sent through bank transfer of post service.
The service can only be utilized for remittances from Hong Kong to Indonesia. The senders may use their local currency when sending the money to later be received in the recipients’ local currency as well.
George Harrap, Bitspark’s CEO, stated in his press release, “We are really glad to collaborate with PT Artabit in providing Indonesians with cheap services. Indonesia is our big opportunity and key focus. This country is logistically different with the Philippines, as people here prefer taking their money at post office rather than doing it at third party-remittances.”
Harrap further continued, “We are by far the cheapest option for sending money to Indonesia and while others also serve remittances through bank transfer or post service, we do it much more effective, both in term of time and cost we spend. This is a win win solution for consumers.”
PT Artabit’s Business Development Director Denny Muktar commented, “At ArtaBit, we see the true power of Bitcoin, not only as a currency, but also as a transportation protocol. Though only a few have ever heard of SWIFT, trillions of Dollar go in and out through this protocol. By our partnership with Bitspark, no one needs to know or understand about Bitcoin.”