The Cuban government has announced that it will recognize and regulate cryptocurrencies for payments, amid a rapid increase in the use of cryptocurrencies in the world and some countries are directed to enact laws to regulate the market, according to CNBC.
A decision published in the Official Gazette said that the Cuban Central Bank would establish rules for these currencies and determine how to license relevant service providers within Cuba.
This comes as the Central American country of El Salvador is preparing to officially recognize the use of “Bitcoin”, the world’s largest cryptocurrency by market value, as a way to encourage remittances from its citizens living abroad when its crypto law takes effect on September 7.
According to the US Associated Press, the Cuban decision, which will enter into force on the 15th of next month, will regulate the use of certain virtual assets in commercial transactions, as well as the licensing of these service providers in operations related to financing, exchange, collection or payment activities in Cuba.
The agency noted that the popularity of such currencies has increased a lot among technology investment groups in Cuba after the dollar became difficult to use, due in part to the strict embargo rules imposed under former US President Donald Trump.
About 10,000 Cubans use bitcoins, making it one of the most used cryptocurrencies in the country, according to unofficial estimates.
Last May, Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel said his government was studying the appropriateness of using cryptocurrencies in the economic operations of Cuba, whose gross domestic product fell by 11% last year due to the US embargo and the effects of the Corona pandemic.
The decision states that the central bank can authorize the use of cryptocurrencies “for reasons of social and economic interests” but with the state guaranteeing that its operations are subject to oversight and that investment operations do not involve illegal activities.