Many cryptocurrency projects have the potential to become a truly global form of currency. Every week, however, it seems we hear news about another country tightening restrictions, roping coins into tax schemes, or even banning their use outright.
Here are five countries which could become centers for cryptocurrency development:
A presidential decree went into effect in March stating not only that ICOs, cryptocurrencies and smart contracts are legal, but also that they would be untaxed — yup that’s right 0% — until 2023. The idea of a fantasy blockchain haven is real here in the form of the High Technologies Park (HTP) special economic zone. The country also has a lower cost of living than central and western European nations and has remained in the top 50 of the World Bank’s ease of doing business index, which makes it one of the most exciting places to watch new fintech projects spring up.
Scoring high marks mostly for its hands-off approach, Denmark has shown that it will let cryptocurrency enthusiasts use coins without any added regulation. Similarly, gains from blockchain don’t count towards capital gains taxes. The Nordic nation has proved to be a popular location for the headquarters of more than a few bitcoin startups. Alongside neighbors Norway and Sweden, the Danes seem to be pushing for more and more cashless solutions, and cryptocurrency fits squarely into that distinction.
The city-state’s status as both a financial and technology hub of Asia already puts it in good standing to be one of the most friendly nations for fans of cryptocurrency. Interestingly enough, the official stance on virtual currencies in the metropolis doesn’t classify them as a currency. Instead, businesses who accept bitcoin are instructed to “record the sale based on the open market value of the goods or services in Singapore dollars”. For individual investors, on the other hand , it seems there won’t be any taxes added after cashing out crypto gains. Couple that with the fact that the island nation is consistently either first or second on the WB’s ease of doing business index, and you have a country that could become the epicenter for all things blockchain.
The Netherlands is a testament to how revolutionary cryptocurrencies can be in the social sphere. In addition to having a bevy of cafes, restaurants, bars and shops that accept crypto as a valid form of payment, Amsterdam is home to the Bitcoin Embassy that serves to educate people and get them talking about this disruptive technology. As far as taxes go, it’s not quite the haven of this list’s other entrants, but it isn’t burdened with exorbitant fees either, being classified in the same category as personal assets. Indeed, what could be cooler than the fact that the country has its very own “Bitcoin City”? The town of Arnhem is something out of a hodler’s dream.
The central European nation is the financial juggernaut of the EU. Despite the fact that many mainstream banks have been vocal opponents of cryptocurrency, that doesn’t seem to be the case here. Crypto-assets are untouched by taxes when they are used for payments, and if you hold on to any capital gains for over a year they can’t be taxed either. In fact, coins are making heady gains into the mainstream here. A survey earlier this year showed that three out of 10 Germans are considering investing in cryptocurrencies. The nation’s largest city, Berlin, often ranks as one of the best places in the world for technology startups as well, making the country one of the most attractive places to go if you want to launch the next killer app in financial technology.