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How can I trade Bitcoin and cryptocurrency in Bermuda?
Introduction to Bitcoin and currency trading in Bermuda
Like Liechtenstein, Gibraltar, and others, a large part of Bermuda’s economy is centred around and dependent upon international commerce and investment. Its economy is unsurprisingly open to Bitcoin generally and to the wider expansion of digital currencies and blockchain-related entities. Gibraltar is very much in the throes of new Bitcoin regulation and supervision, whilst Liechtenstein was ahead of the game a few years earlier. Bermuda, however, is now building on its cryptocurrency regulatory framework to further promote the industry.
With Bermuda’s existing status as an international financial hub already assured, moving into the cryptocurrency space with comprehensive legislation should position it as a prominent player in the decentralized financial world. Whether this strategic thinking continues in favour of crypto following price volatility and a spate of high-profile crypto companies collapsing worldwide, is something time will tell.
Bermuda-based banks able to deal in cryptocurrencies are thin on the ground but recently one prominent bank, Jewel Bank, has been granted a full bank and digital asset business licence from the Bermuda Monetary Authority (BMA), making it the country’s first digital asset bank. It’s able to serve digital asset firms in non-sanctioned countries worldwide and offer services in Bermuda to promote the digital economy in Bermuda.
Is Bermuda a good place for my crypto or blockchain-related company?
Bermuda is known for its increasingly crypto-friendly regulations and stricter compliance with anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing measures, all of which add confidence to the crypto investors and blockchain businesses which head there.
As long ago as 2020 (a long time in the crypto world, that is) the country’s Premier informed a world forum that the Island was preparing to become something of a crypto and blockchain hub, testing the use of stablecoins and opening up the prospect of a community-owned national digital bank.
The country’s regulatory framework has been developed to provide legal and regulatory clarity to industry participants whilst staying in accordance with the demands of ever-changing international standards. As such the framework comprises two legislative areas that your business needs to know about. It uses the term digital assets to cover cryptocurrencies, digital coins, and tokens by the way.
The first of the two key pieces of legislation is The Digital Asset Business Act DABA which offers a licensing protocol for Virtual Asset Services Providers VASPs (or businesses that propose to undertake digital asset business). The second important Act is The Digital Asset Issuance Act DAIA which is a regulatory regime covering persons seeking to carry on a digital asset issuance – basically the offering of tokens and coins. Undertaking such an issue within Bermuda, by the way, without regulatory approval a criminal offence, incurring big fines, imprisonment – or both, if you’ve really annoyed the judge.
Is Bermuda a good place for Bitcoin mining?
Not particularly. There are no bans or prohibitions in place for your Bitcoin mining in Bermuda, but the natural barrier to entry is the cost of energy. Thriving Bitcoin mining economies around the world are those that have some way of spreading electricity costs such as being practised in parts of Russia, or by tapping into vast quantities of cheap natural electricity, such as Iceland and Kazakhstan, or those that are setting up mining entities next to a rich source of thermal energy from geysers or volcanos – such as supposed to be happening in El Salvador.
Can I do Bitcoin courses in Bermuda?
There are a number of Crypto and blockchain courses available even at leading institutions such as Bermuda University. Only in 2022, there was an open invitation to students for a virtual event named ‘Blockchain on the Beach’ (where else?) which sought to promote and enthuse the population about the joys of crypto, digital and blockchain-related studies.
The Ministry of Economy and Labour’s Economic Development Department EDD ran the event as part of Tech Education Day, students across Bermuda could participate for free and gain insights into emerging technologies such as cryptocurrency, blockchain, NFTs and even mining.
In addition to numerous fintech-related sessions, presentations, and activities, the Blockchain on the Beach conference will launch Krypto for Kids Caribbean and feature the launch of a Global Blockchain Scholars Program aiming for inclusive crypto knowledge sharing for the future.
Crypto regulation in Bermuda
What Bitcoin regulations do I need to know in Bermuda?
The Digital Asset Business Act DABA is the statutory basis for regulating and licensing digital asset entities and companies and in mid-2022, over a dozen companies licensed under the DABA and/or the Innovative Insurance (IIGB) category came together to form NEXT – an autonomous body aiming to collate the direction of crypto and blockchain developments in Bermuda. Next looks to shape legislation around key issues, such as taxes or stablecoins, on a case-by-case basis with the Bermuda BMA providing feedback on a number of issues relevant to the crypto and cyber spaces industry.
Crypto Facilitation - Banks5
Crypto Services - VASPS0
Crypto Pensions / Investment Industry0
Business Community and Enterprise Funding0
Taxes in Bermuda
Is crypto trading taxed in Bermuda?
When it comes to tax, Bermuda is noted for being a zero-income tax and zero capital gains tax environment for crypto asset gains or any transactions involving them. This happy situation would seem to apply to exempted companies involves in digital asset business, incudiing digital asset issuers. For the man on the street (or beach) gains from personal crypto investment would appear to be be taxed under personal income tax gains. However, if you’ve made a killing, the authorities of Bermuda have passed a bill according to which taxes that need to be paid can be paid with a cryptocurrency. Only a handful of countries allow this.
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