Puerto Rico Launches Blockchain Advisory Council to Support the Industry
Puerto Ricoís Department of Economic Development and Trade (DDEC) recently launched a Blockchain Advisory Council, reportedly to ďattract and develop companies based on blockchain technology,Ē according to local news outlet El Nuevo Dia.
The move was announced by the islandís secretary of economic development and commerce, Manuel Laboy Rivera, during the Blockchain Unbound conference in San Juan. The advisory council will comprise of members of both the private and public sector, including Rivera.
It will also include the governmentís chief innovation officer (CIO) Luis Arocho, its commissioner of Financial Institutions George Joyner, and a number of blockchain industry entrepreneurs who recently moved to Puerto Rico.
El Nuevo Dia, citing sources close to the agency, reports the advisory will unofficially serve as a ďfilterĒ to distinguish legitimate blockchain projects that help solve the islandís problems, from projects that donít hold any value.
This, as recently ďblockchainĒ has become a buzzword companies take advantage of. As covered by CCN, Long Island Iced Teaís shares surged 300% after it rebranded to Long Blockchain.
The news outletís source stated:
Rivera further revealed that the government, through the Blockchain Advisory Council, will develop the best possible regulations and legal framework to further support blockchain businesses. As a US commonwealth, the island offers entrepreneurs the same protections given by the US federal government.
These entrepreneurs flocked to Puerto Rico after the countryís infrastructure was decimated by Hurricane Maria back in September, at about the same time most cryptocurrencies saw their value skyrocket. The islandís government has offered entrepreneurs attractive tax incentives, in a bid to boost its depressed economy.
One of these incentives can be found within the Internal Revenue Code, and is called Act 22. It reportedly allows non-residents to not pay taxes on long-term capital gains. Speaking to CNBC, Laboy stated:
One of the first entrepreneurs to move to the island was Tether co-founder Brock Pierce, who together with other businessmen are creating whatís been dubbed a ďcrypto utopiaĒ in the region.
As covered by CCN, research recently found Tether itself may have a banking relationship with Puerto Rico-based Noble Bank. If true, this would put to rest rumors that Tether is a Ponzi scheme using its USDT tokens to pump bitcoinís price.
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