- The Bahamas government intends to allow Bahamian residents to pay taxes using digital assets.
- The Bahamian nation works towards being a global crypto hub.
According to a whitepaper detailing the Bahamas’ digital asset strategy until 2026, the government will allow Bahamians to pay taxes in cryptocurrency. In a Wednesday white paper, the Bahamas’ Office of the Prime Minister announced that taxes would get paid using digital assets. The government will achieve the goal by collaborating with the country’s central bank and the private sector.
The Bahamas government introduces crypto taxes possibilities
Digital assets might soon be accessible to residents of the Bahamas, an island nation. In addition, the government intends to advance crypto adoption and usage among its citizens by establishing a national digital currency and encouraging greater Sand Dollar use.
The Government will endeavour to ensure that digital assets are not used for the evasion of taxes or sanctions, and will seek to ensure compliance with all applicable tax information exchange agreements (TIEA) and domestic laws and agreed OECD standards.The Future of Digital Assets in The Bahamas Policy White paper
To achieve uniformity among the branches of government, the Bahamas announced the creation of a digital asset policy committee and a digital advisory panel, also known as the DAP. Prime Minister Philip Davis will lead the former, among other important executives.
In addition, the advisory panel will include specialists from the digital asset sector. These experts will closely watch digital assets and related digital developments, emerging trends, and associated threats to ensure that they are up to date. The Bahamas, like the other top global economic powers, wants to make its country a cryptocurrency centre.
We have the vision to transform The Bahamas into the leading digital assets hub in the Caribbean and a global leader in the progressive regulation of businesses in this profoundly innovative space. While we recognise the extraordinary opportunities afforded by digital assets, we also recognise the risks, and thus we emphasise the importance of effective regulation.Philip Davis
The publication of the whitepaper takes place one week before the Crypto Bahamas conference, which cryptocurrency exchange FTX will host. Guests will include former U.K. Prime Minister Tony Blair, Bill Clinton, and National Football League quarterback Tom Brady.
According to Cryptopolitan, FTX relocated its headquarters to the Bahamas last September. Its CEO Sam Bankman-Fried attributed the relocation to a “progressive and forward-thinking crypto bill” that would regulate the industry in the country.
Crypto industry developments in the Bahamas
In October 2020, the Bahamas became the first country to implement a CBDC completely. The Sand Dollar’s digital currency got designed to increase financial inclusion in the archipelago nation. FTX, one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, has established a Bahamian subsidiary and expanded to the country in September 2021.
According to the whitepaper, the government claimed that its digital assets approach is based on successful examples from other countries, such as Gibraltar, France, Switzerland, and Liechtenstein. Also, The Bahamas studied current and planned legislation in countries like the United States, the United Kingdom, the European Union, Dubai, Singapore, Japan, and Australia.
The government has sought to establish a balanced policy that allows for the advancement of cryptocurrencies while also ensuring their safety. The legislation also follows best practices and high standards and fulfils international obligations to provide a safe environment for innovation and opportunity.
Furthermore, the Bahamian Government remains dedicated to the fight against money laundering and unlawful transactions and financing. The government plans to ensure that its legal and regulatory frameworks surrounding virtual assets are kept up to date and in full concurrence with acceptable international standards, such as FATF’s recommendations.
Moreover, o ensure that their long-term digital asset policy is clear, strong, and consistent, the Bahamas will publish an annual update and conduct a comprehensive policy review by 31 December 2023.
With the growing number of opportunities in the digital asset sector in The Bahamas, Bahamians must acquire the skills and knowledge required to take on those employment opportunities. The government aims to increase the number of sector-specific, academic, professional, and vocational education options available to allow Bahamians to get jobs.
Collaboration between the relevant authorities, including the SCB, and the private sector will be encouraged and supported by the government. It will be done with assistance from the University of Bahamas (UB) to achieve more ground in terms of expertise.
The objective of the collaboration is to produce a series of crypto-asset courses and certificate and degree options. In addition, experts worldwide will be consulted to collaborate with UB’s administration and six professors and academics to create the curriculum and teach the courses.
In 2022, the Bohemian government will establish the DPC and DAP. In addition, they will increase the capabilities of the SCB and expand digital asset learning opportunities. Finally, they will modify the DARE Act to allow Bahamians access to digital assets using B$ and tax payments made in cryptocurrencies.
The comprehensive extensive digital asset policy framework will allow The Bahamas to seize opportunities to address some of our economic problems and provide jobs and prosperity for Bahamians.