Panama’s National Assembly took the first steps to open the doors to bitcoin (BTC) and cryptocurrencies. This was achieved with the approval, in first discussion, of a legislation that seeks to regulate the use of crypto assets in that territory.

Gabriel Silva, Panamanian congressman and one of the promoters of the law, explained on his Twitter account that the project is important for his country because it seeks to give legal stability to crypto assets.

On the other hand, he pointed out that another of the objectives of the legislation is to develop the cryptocurrency industry while attracting investments that generate employment.

In this sense, the bill proposes the admission of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as a means of payment throughout the Panamanian territory. Specifically mentioned are the Ethereum cryptocurrency, ether (ETH), as well as XRP, litecoin (LTC), XDC Network (XDC), elrond (EGLD), stellar (XLM), IOTA and Algorand (ALGO).

However, the proposal does not mandate the use of bitcoin as a means of payment. According to Silva, it is optional. The regulations to implement these payment systems would be dictated in other provisions and the National Bank of Panama would be designated as the supervisory body of the activity.

Additionally, it is proposed the payment of taxes for the holding of crypto assets, excluding from this concept the holdings derived from the mining of cryptocurrencies.

The congressman highlighted the fact that the use of blockchain platforms in the services offered by the government is included in the nation’s digital agenda. The idea is that there will be more transparency and more efficiency in public procedures. 

The law also provides for the issuance of digital value, tokenization of precious metals and other goods. After this first discussion, the project will have to be submitted to new processes of debate and approval until it reaches its final approval. So far, no dates have been indicated for these new phases.

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