Belarus Issues Decree Legalizing All Cryptocurrency Related Activity

As governments all over the world are cracking down on crypto activity and regulating ICOs, the government of Belarus has decided to take an alternate route. With its new decree, Belarus now becomes one of the most open minded, and supportive nations concerning cryptocurrencies. On March 28th, President Alexander Lukashenko issued a decree which permits all cryptocurrency related activity within the country’s borders. The law supports all of the different aspects of the industry including Crypto exchanges, Initial Coin Offerings, Cryptocurrency mining, and Blockchain services. This decree, makes Belarus the first nation in the European continents to fully and completely legalize cryptocurrency activity. Furthermore, it was only signed to last through 2022, not indefinitely.

One of the most interesting facts about the decree is that it will exempt taxes from all cryptocurrency related activity and business! Most countries, including the United States, have been all over crypto enthusiasts, making sure they pay taxes on all of their capital gains. This provides an incentive for more individuals, locals and foreigners, to pursue crypto related business opportunities in Belarus. The decree will further trigger an increase in mining rigs, ICOs, exchanges, and even crypto related businesses. In order to fully take advantage of the new laws, companies will need to register with the Belarus High Technologies Park. Anyone who registers, will receive tentative residence permits, and a special visa.

Most countries regulate for security and efficiency, Belarus decided to unregulate to improve those things. Belarus believes that by applying these rules, the country will strengthen their measures for anti-money laundering, illegal incomes, and terrorism financing. By having everyone involved in Crypto registering with the government, and doing so because of tax incentives, the government believes it will have a better grasp of crypto activities along its borders.

 

Jaime Gutt

South Korean Government Will Begin to Tax Cryptocurrency Related Gains

The South Korean Government has officially announced that they will be implementing a taxation framework for all capital gains related to cryptocurrencies. The new laws should take effect in 2019. An official from the Korean Ministry of Finance reported: “We do not have a specific time frame, but we are thinking about announcing a virtual money tax in the first half of the year.” An exact timeline remains to be seen. South Korea came out with this announcement of a tax plan following the G20 Summit which recently took place, where Finance Ministers from across the globe gathered. Read More

Government of Antigua and Barbuda to Release Native Cryptocurrency Exchange

The government of Antigua and Barbuda has announced that they will be releasing a native cryptocurrency exchange. The sovereign state consists of two primary Islands, along with several smaller islands, all in the Eastern Caribbean Ocean. Government Officials aim to adapt new blockchain related technologies within the country at an early stage, in order to push the small country forward. The country’s Minister of Information Technology, Melford Nicholas, clarified that the government is pursuing an exchange which will facilitate the process of buying and selling of digital currencies for individuals. The exchange will then charge a fee for each transaction. Officials hope that this new exchange will trigger non-tax revenue for the state. A statement from the government declares..

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Australia is Next in Regulating Cryptocurrency Exchanges.

The Australian government has implemented new regulations for cryptocurrency exchanges. The AUSTRAC (Australian Transaction and Reporting Analysis Centre), reportedly reached out to cryptocurrency exchanges, and businesses involved in the industry, in order to inform them about new requirements they must abide by and implement, which should prevent money laundering and terror-financing. These new requirements were set to commence on April 3rd.

What exactly are these requirements all about? The Australian Government stated clearly on their website:

From 3 April 2018 DCE businesses are required to meet AML/CTF obligations, including:

  • adopting and maintaining an AML/CTF program to identify, mitigate and manage money laundering and terrorism financing risks
  • identifying and verifying the identities of their customers
  • reporting to AUSTRAC suspicious matters, and transactions involving physical currency of $10,000 or more
  • keeping certain records for seven years.

Authorities highlighted that there will be a six month period where the AUSTRAC’s Chief Executive will be overseeing, and interfering with exchanges who fail to comply with their new legal obligations. The new obligations further require all exchanges to be registered with the government by May 14, 2018, latest. Exchanges which are already open and functioning must also register with the new, AUSTRAC ran,  “Digital Currency Exchange Register”. However existing exchanges will be permitted to continue with their business as they go through the new registration process due to “Transitional Registration Arrangements.” Government authorities announced publicly.. “There will be criminal offense and civil penalty consequences if you provide digital currency exchange services without being registered.”

Michael Keenan, Australia’s Justice Minister, was the one to break the news regarding the government’s will to regulate cryptocurrency exchanges. Under the new regulations, the AUSTRAC will have a much stronger grasp of the country’s digital currency exchanges and they will put themselves in a better position to prevent money laundering and other illegal activities. All exchanges will now be under the watch of Australia’s Financial Intelligence Agency, the AUSTRAC.

By Jaime Gutt.

South Africa Aims to Regulate and Tax Cryptocurrencies, Simultaneously Pushing for Growth.

South Africa’s Reserve Bank (SARB) announced that they will be forming a self-regulatory administrative branch, in order to regulate and stay on top of cryptocurrency developments and other fintech projects. Although the SARB has never had much to do with cryptocurrencies, they have decided take a step, imposing regulations through this new branch dubbed (SRO) which plans on protecting investors and lowering potential risk which can come through unregulated exchanges and investments. The SARB’s director of Banking Practice, Bridget King, believes that despite the regulations being implemented, the SARB will do its best to further aid the growth of cryptocurrencies and blockchain as an industry in South Africa. King declared.“Regulating cryptocurrencies prematurely could have the negative consequence of throttling the growth and innovation of the industry. In addition, if laws are drafted based on existing technology, which is still in its growth phase, there is a risk that the technology may have moved so much by the time the legislation is enacted, that the legislation is obsolete or requires updating almost immediately to align with the latest technology.” Read More

Rockefeller Family’s Venture Capital Firm To Partner with Crypto Investment Firm

Earlier this year it was reported that George Soros, a world renowned investor and billionaire, will be investing in cryptocurrencies. Although Soros admitted to have had doubts on Bitcoin, he is now looking to partake. Similarly, the Rockefeller family, will follow suit by partnering with Coinfund, a New York-based firm specializing in cryptocurrency investments. To be more specific, the Rockefeller Foundation’s venture capital branch called Venrock, will be joining forces with Coinfund. Venrock was founded in 1969 by Laurance S. Rockefeller. Since, the venture capital firm has invested in the very early startup stages of Apple, Intel, AppNexus and many other successful firms. David Pakman, who is a partner at Venrock, voiced some details regarding Venrock’s mission, in an interview he had with Fortune.. Read More

Argentina Celebrates “Bitcoin Day”!

Not too long ago, it was National Siblings Day in the United States, and seemingly everyday, something or someone is commemorated by a nation or religion. Argentina is no different. Argentinians created “Bitcoin Day”. Five hundred participants held an event in a neighborhood called Almargo, with the purpose of increasing demand for Bitcoin and its technologies. Argentina is aiming to become the South American leader in Cryptocurrency and Blockchain innovation. One of the primary organizers of the event, Adriel Araujo mentioned.. Read More

In-Person Bitcoin Transaction in Singapore Ends with Two Men Having Over $300,000 Stolen

Singapore has seen the latest in-person Bitcoin robbery. Earlier this year, two men had over $300,000 in cash stolen following an assault. The two men had planned to hand over the cash in exchange for cryptocurrencies. Nevertheless, the “Sellers” of the cryptocurrencies assaulted the two men, took their cash, and ran away. The Singapore Police Force released a statementdeclaring that the incident happened on April 8th. Shortly after the police released their statement, a potential suspect for the robbery was charged and detained by authorities. If the prospect ends up being convicted he may end up being sentenced for up to twenty years behind bars. Singapore is known to have very strict laws and regulations, accompanied by harsh repercussions for criminals.  Reports have not emerged detailing whether the huge sum of cash has been returned to the rightful owner. The Police further stated.. Read More

Bitcoin Declared Compliant with Sharia Law

Many are attributing Bitcoin’s $1000 spike back in April to a declaration made by a Muslim scholar regarding Bitcoin’s compliance with Sharia Law. This declaration may have had massive implications, as it may have opened the door to millions of muslim investors who could now begin investing in crypto without having to betray their religion’s law. There has been plenty of skepticism within the muslim world, regarding Bitcoin’s status within Sharia Law. There are strict rules and guidelines in Sharia which detail what is a legitimate currency, and what may be an illegitimate, gambling tool. Sharia Law does not permit gambling or lending money at high interest rates. To date, Islam is the largest and most vibrant religion worldwide, totaling 23% of the globe’s population.

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Huobi Makes its Case for Safest Centralized Exchange

Back in January, a Japanese cryptocurrency exchange had over $500 million stolen by hackers. The cybercriminals managed to steal roughly 523 million in NEM coins. NEM is a cryptocurrency which aims to help companies and businesses manage data digitally. Consequently, the digital token fell about 20% on the following day. In addition, just yesterday, an Indian cryptocurrency exchange called Coinsecure reported having $3 million dollars stolen. These instances, amongst many others, show the importance of choosing a secure cryptocurrency exchange for yourself. An exchange you can rely on, and sleep peacefully at night knowing your digital assets will not be stolen, and if stolen then refunded.

Which cryptocurrency exchange offers the most reliable security features? Huobi Pro. Huobi Pro has just launched two new security mechanisms which fall under the umbrella of “Huobi Buybacks”. Huobi Buybacks include “Huobi User Protection Fund” and “Huobi Security Reserve”. Let’s delve into what they are in simpler terms:

1) Huobi User Protection Fund — Through this new initiative, Huobi will be using 20% of their income to buy back as many Huobi Tokens (HTs) as possible. Following this, the newly possesed Huobi Tokens will be stored, and used to compensate user losses in case of theft or platform breaches and to improve Huobi’s security.

2) Huobi Security Reserve — This new reserve created by Huobi holds a total of 20,000 bitcoins. The funds currently sit on an an independent address. Similar to the case of “Huobi User Protection Fund”, Huobi uses these funds to to compensate user losses. As soon as any security breach takes place, the funds stored in the reserve will be used to pay back users provided they weren’t at fault.

With these “Huobi Buybacks” initiatives, Huobi guarantees in full, security for its users and for their digital assets. Personally, I’ve been using Huobi Pro and I cannot be happier with my choice.

Learn more about Huobi Buybacks using this link!

By Jaime Gutt.