With the ongoing blockchain revolution increasing across the world, there seems to be a shift in interest from cryptocurrencies to a new-found interest in the blockchain. Blockchain is now being embraced globally by countries that see its potential to disrupt existing traditional systems. Multiple industries are researching how blockchain could benefit them. Consequently, blockchain technology and blockchain platforms have wholly dominated the cryptocurrency conversation amidst growing hype over the potential benefits the technology offers.
While some countries have created enormous roadblocks for blockchain’s growth, others have provided a favorable backdrop for the technology. Out of those that offer a pleasant environment for blockchain development, a few are setting themselves up to be blockchain tech hubs. They are aiming to be the perfect places where blockchain startups, businesses, and innovations can thrive. It means that they’re setting up favorable infrastructure and laws geared to earn them recognition as blockchain hubs. To facilitate these endeavors, a few of these places have introduced favorable tax rates along with positive legal frameworks supporting blockchain technology.
Becoming a blockchain hub can help some of these locations boost their economies, especially for some of the islands, such as the ones that we’ll talk about now.
Blockchain Tech Hub Islands
The blockchain revolution differs from country to country with some regions being exceptionally ahead regarding blockchain and its integration into society. Furthermore, the blockchain revolution is being spearheaded by some unexpected candidates. In this article, we’ll explore some blockchain tech hub islands that are ideal to launch your blockchain startup, or just to visit and chill if you’re into the blockchain scene. They include:
Malta is fast on its way to becoming the world’s most blockchain-friendly state in the world. Also referred to as the ‘Blockchain Island,’ Malta remains a pioneer in creating a solid regulatory framework for blockchain startups. On July 4th, 2018, the Maltese parliament passed three comprehensive bills that provided a legal framework for crypto, blockchain, and DLT (Distributed Ledger Technologies). Offering such a hospitable environment for blockchain has made Malta a go-to country for blockchain companies. Renowned blockchain companies such as Binance, BitBay, and Okex have all already set up operations in the country. Thanks to the enormous contribution of the Maltese government, Malta has become a global blockchain hub.
Singapore is popular for having the most successful blockchain startups in the world. This island state has an excellent technological infrastructure that’s ideal for both local and foreign blockchain platforms. By taking a neutral stance towards crypto, the Singapore government has allowed startups to set up in the country at an increasing rate. Furthermore, the central bank is pursuing a blockchain strategy that connects commercial banks in the region through distributed ledger technologies. Concerning regulation, the state had opted for an open approach towards crypto-firms but has since changed the strategy after attracting some scams.
Bermuda is well-known as a popular tax haven that offers relaxed rules for organizations. This island state has only one type of tax, the minimum payroll tax which accounts for only 10% of one’s pay. Numerous offshore companies have taken advantage of this feature. A prime example is Google. Google invested $10 billion in one of their subsidiaries in the state to avoid $2 billion in taxes. The BMA (Bermuda Monetary Authority) has regulated the crypto-environment to prevent blockchain misuse. Bermuda is also known for sheltering the world’s largest crypto-exchange, Binance. Binance intends to invest a further $15 million in the country to fund blockchain programs and startups.
Japan has always been extremely friendly to blockchain and cryptocurrency since the start. It’s also largely accredited to being the homeland of Bitcoin’s mysterious creator, Satoshi Nakamoto. Apart from being a highly technically advanced state, it also has a properly defined regulatory framework for cryptocurrency trading. As of April 2017, Japan recognized crypto as legal tender and offered crypto-exchanges a favorable regulatory environment to conduct their operations. Japan is also one of the largest Bitcoin traders, with rumors that the Japanese Yen accounts for more than 50% of global Bitcoin trading. The country is also ahead in cryptocurrency adoption with some Japanese stores already accepting payments in digital currency.
Blockchain Tech Hubs that Aren’t Islands
For a while now, Estonia has been on top of the blockchain and cryptocurrency game. For starters, Estonia was one of the first countries that considered issuing a state cryptocurrency known as EstCoin. Estonia is famous for making strides to integrate blockchain with its citizens and economy in an exciting way. The state recently created an e-residency program that allows both its citizens and foreign entrepreneurs to e-vote and also to become digital citizens of the country. The state also boasts of a friendly-tax regime and crypto-regulations that are favorable to blockchain startups. The country requires that all blockchain and crypto startups acquire a trading license first before they can begin operations. However, the registration process is exceptionally welcoming.
Switzerland has made its way to the list of top states that are blockchain and cryptocurrency friendly and havens for blockchain startups. Multiple companies and startups, about 50 to 100, have all set up their headquarters in Switzerland. The state’s tax regime is hugely favorable to startup. FINMA, the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority, has also set up guidelines to help startups launch ICOs in an approach that is compliant with Swiss laws. Switzerland considers digital currency as foreign currency and thus has no capital gains tax levied on traders in the state.
The US has embraced digital currencies form the beginning and contains the largest user base of Bitcoin in the world. The country recognizes digital currencies as assets, and therefore, they are subject to capital gains tax. The regulatory framework in the country varies from state to state with favorable regulations being in Texas, Arizona, Nevada, New Hampshire, Tennessee, Montana, and South Carolina. US authorities remain skeptical of digital currencies and continuously warn of the increasing risks associated with cryptocurrency. Apart from that, the US is home to some of the strongest blockchain and crypto startups in the world.
Despite the dismal performance of the cryptocurrency market, the blockchain revolution is alive and well as more countries race towards blockchain adoption. As the perception towards blockchain continues to shift into the positive, more blockchain tech hubs are poised to sprout all over the globe. We encourage you to check out our blockchain and gold-based assets on our main website.