The Swiss municipality of Chiasso will accept tax payments in bitcoin starting from the beginning of 2018 in an attempt to make Switzerland a global hub for financial technologies and cryptocurrency start-ups and a world leader in bitcoin adoption.
According to the latest report, Chiasso is going to take bitcoin to settle up to 250 Swiss francs ($265) of tax bills starting from January 2018. Cryptocurrency and blockchain companies operating in the region have supported the decision of implementing the new scheme. The announcement makes Chiasso able to compete with Zug as the leading Swiss canton for cryptocurrency innovation.
As the banking sector had suffered greatly in the wake of the recent financial crises, Chiasso began to look for another source of tax revenues. As a solution, the authorities came across the fast expanding fintech and cryptocurrency sphere.
Mayor Bruno Arrigoni said in a statement:
“Chiasso is recognised internationally as an epicenter of a growing technological and economic growth for both the canton and in Switzerland.”
Chiasso represents itself as the major rival to Zug’s Crypto Valley for fintech and cryptocurrency start-ups. Approving this status, the canton’s authorities continue attracting cryptocurrency companies to the region. During the latest few months, Chiasso’s mayor has met with a great number of cryptocurrency entrepreneurs and, as a result, eight start-ups have established their headquarters and are now operating in the municipality.
According to the official press release:
“the Executive will evaluate the possibility of participating as a founding partner in the formation of a non-profit BHB foundation, which will involve some of the highest representatives of Chiasso’s Blockchain / Bitcoin technology.”
Zug, the established center of a Crypto Valley hub, has already attracted such promising global start-ups as Xapo, Breadwallet, Etherisc and Monetas. Last year, Zug was the first to accept payments up to 200 Swiss francs in bitcoin for counsel services. From the moment of its official announcement in July 1, 2016, more than 40 bitcoin payments have been done surpassing all the authorities’ expectations.
The examples of Zug and Chiasso cantons show that the authorities are ready to embrace new technologies and give many other Swiss cantons hope to better attract the progressive fintech and cryptocurrency global start-ups into their territories.
Swiss cantons eagerly advertise their credentials in new high-tech advances, including financial and blockchain technologies. As, for instance, we may see new digital identity systems enabling residents to use local government services with more efficiency and under established methods, which have recently been presented in Schaffhausen and Zug, and a new blockchain project for electronic processing and archiving of official documents, which has been adopted in Geneva earlier this month.