Investment Citizenships has gathered enough steam over the past few years to make it to several columns of published media. What makes the subject an even more interesting case study is when the citizenships come for BTC. The skyrocketing of Bitcoins has polarized global economies on their crypto-stance. While some nations have blocked the crypto, others have gone as far as to offer crypto-passports inviting foreign crypto-holders.
When a country bans crypto trading, the operating exchanges seek refuge in crypto-friendly countries. These crypto-friendly countries capitalize on this by offering them a platform with the intent of profit-making.
Raj Chowdhury, HashCash Chief, and a crypto-investor explains the scenario, “After the central bank of India, RBI prohibited crypto-trade in 2018, some exchanges moved bases to crypto-friendly countries such as Australia, Malta, and Singapore, while others faced closure.”
Vanuatu is an island country of Oceania in the South Pacific Ocean. It is the only country and first in the league to accept BTC payments in exchange for citizenship. This amounts to one of the fastest investment migration programs in the world.
Bitcoins or cryptocurrency as a whole is advantageous to various businesses. However, this is profitable with the governments of states legalizing the operations. Countries like Vanuatu, Portugal, and Malta allow an environment for investors to make most of their residency at the same time help strengthen their economy.
It is interesting to note that, Antigua and Barbuda aren’t far behind in the designs of their own crypto-passport
“It is important to note in this context, that Vanuatu is an emerging economy with 80% of its population engaged in agriculture,” observes Chowdhury.
Malta, on the other hand, has been a ‘developed’ economy since the 1990s. The government of Malta has adopted a progressive approach to cryptocurrency, positioning itself, a global leader with regards to crypto regulations. Cryptocurrencies are not legal tender in Malta, however, the government recognizes cryptocurrency as “a medium of exchange, a unit of account, or a store of value.”
Malta is yet another country offering citizenships by Investment. Even though day traders are required to pay 35% Business Income Tax, all transactions that aren’t a part of trading are exempted from taxation.
“The Maltese government legalized cryptocurrency exchanges in 2018 introducing momentous legislation that structured a novel regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies. They also addressed AML/CFT concerns,” he continues, ” The same year one of the largest economies of the world closed their doors to cryptocurrency”.
Singapore ranks high among countries and is a hub of crypto-activities due to its support for a zero capital gains policy on cryptocurrency income. The country has been well known for its easy tax regime and continued efforts in bringing in tax regulations to favor foreign investors.
“Nations of varying economic strengths are looking to attract foreign crypto investors with lucrative offers and relaxed policies. These economies, riding the cryptocurrency wave, seek to strengthen their economic position before others catch up,” Chowdhury concludes.
The crypto carpet has had people divided into supporters and naysayers. While some turn away from cryptocurrency, others are nosediving in. As it would eventually turn out, some nation’s loss may turn out to be another’s gain. At this critical juncture, the standing of every economy concerning cryptocurrency will turn out to be a landmark decision given the future.