Belarus Legalizes Cryptocurrencies and ICOs – Tax-Free for Five Years
The president of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, has signed a decree which legalizes cryptocurrencies, initial coin offerings (ICOs), and smart contracts. All crypto transactions and related income, including from mining, will be tax-free for the next five years.
Legalizing Crypto Transactions and ICOs
President Alexander Lukashenko announced on Friday that the decree “On the Development of Digital Economy” has been signed. He explained, “the main goal of the document is to create such conditions that global IT companies would come to Belarus, open their representative offices, development centers, and create popular products in the world.”
<figure id="attachment_94416" style="width: 663px" class="wp-caption aligncenter">
<figcaption class="wp-caption-text">President Alexander Lukashenko’s announcement on Friday.</figcaption>
The decree also legalizes cryptocurrencies, ICOs, and smart contracts. Reuters wrote, “Belarus has legalized transactions in cryptocurrencies,” reiterating that it is “part of a drive to foster private sector growth and attract foreign investment by liberalizing parts of its Soviet-style economy.” The news outlet added:
The decree legalizes initial coin offerings and transactions in cryptocurrencies, including their exchange for traditional currencies on Belarussian exchanges. while all trades will be tax-free for the next five years.
“Individuals will be able to store, change, buy, donate, bequeath, mine, and also exchange cryptocurrencies and tokens for fiat currencies,” Rusbase elaborated. In addition, it is not necessary to declare cryptocurrency profits and income from their operations since they are tax-free until January 1, 2023.
Unprecedented Benefits for HTP Residents
The decree creates unprecedented conditions for residents of the Belarusian High-Tech Park (HTP), which news.Bitcoin.com explained in last month’s article. It allows HTP residents to “become firms that mine and exchange cryptocurrencies,” Sputnik wrote, noting that:
Belarus has created unique conditions for the world to regulate the sphere of cryptocurrencies, both for ordinary citizens and for companies and investors in this sphere.
Legal entities in HTP can attract investments by issuing their own ICO tokens as well as buying and selling them through crypto exchanges, Rusbase detailed.
Earlier this month, the Ministry of Finance and the National Bank of Belarus said that they do not support the legalization of cryptocurrencies “because it can entail serious risks in the financial market,” Belapan reported. A source in the state administration told the publication, “It is impossible to supervise over cryptocurrencies and trace their movement.”
What do you think of Belarus’ move to legalize crypto and ICO activities and make them tax-free? Let us know in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Al Jazeera, and Lukashenko’s press service.
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