Argentina bank Banco Masventas (BMV) has partnered with the local blockchain financial services startup Bitex to become the world’s first banking institution to actively leverage Bitcoin as an international payments standard. The move is a conspicuous move away from extant options such as the SWIFT clearing network, which has seen multiple failures and security problems in recent years. “The service allows you to reduce costs associated with international transfers as there are no international banks as intermediaries,” a dedicated information page on the bank’s website states. The service will initially roll out to 50 countries, with payment timeframes reduced to 24 hours. If it proves to be successful, Argentina would significantly outstep progress with cryptocurrencies by its neighbors, while the country’s domestic banking sector has been preparing for closer integration for some time.