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Ecuador’s highest court has ruled to recognize same-sex marriage, marking a watershed moment for LGBTQ rights in the Catholic-majority country.
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Authorities in China’s far-western Xinjiang region appear to have officially legalized so-called re-education camps for people accused of religious extremism a little more than a month after denying such centers exist.
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A new presidential decree legalizes cryptocurrency trading in Uzbekistan, introducing licensing for crypto exchanges and a set of requirements they will be obliged to meet. To operate in the country, foreign trading platforms will have to establish local subsidiaries and abide by the country’s relevant laws.
Decree Introduces Licensing for Crypto Exchanges
Uzbekistan’s President, Shavkat Mirziyoyev, has signed a decree legalizing the activities of cryptocurrency exchanges, local and regional media reported. The document introduces a licensing regime for trading platforms as well as a number of requirements they need to meet in order to be allowed to operate in the Central Asian country. It comes after an earlier decree issued in July prepared the legal grounds for regulating crypto-related activities.
The decree “On measures to organize the activities of crypto-exchanges in Uzbekistan”, № ПП-3926 from September 2, states that an organization which provides an electronic platform for the exchange, purchase and sale of crypto assets is recognized as crypto exchange in Uzbekistan. The legal document defines ‘crypto assets’ as a set of records in a blockchain that has value and owner.
According to the text, the circulation of these assets and the activities of the crypto trading platforms will be regulated with special normative acts and won’t be covered by the legislation that currently applies to securities and the activities of traditional exchanges.
Monitoring, in terms of compliance with the rules on combating the legalization of proceeds from criminal activities and terrorism financing will be conducted by the licensing body, the National Agency for Project Management under the President, and other relevant state institutions. The decree also notes that the license for conducting crypto-exchange activities will be issued only to foreign legal entities which have established subsidiaries or other enterprises in Uzbekistan.
Another important aspect is that the operations of corporate entities and private persons, including non-residents, related to the turnover of cryptocurrencies are not subject to taxation. Revenues received as a result of these transactions will not be included in the base income used to calculate taxes and other mandatory payments.
Specific Requirements for Trading Platforms
The presidential decree contains a list of mandatory requirements that companies applying for a license to trade cryptocurrencies in Uzbekistan are obliged to meet. They must have an authorized capital equal to at least 30,000 minimum wages on the day of the filing of the application. The equivalent of 20,000 minimum wages has to be reserved in a separate account with one of Uzbekistan’s commercial banks. It’s unclear whether the document is referring to monthly or daily salaries. According to Trading Economics, in 2017 the minimum monthly wage in the country reached 1,453,200 UZS (~$ 185 USD).
The applicants are required to have built an operational electronic crypto-trading system using servers located in the Republic of Uzbekistan. The platforms will have to adopt rules for trading and publish exchange rates based on the ratio between supply and demand. They will be obliged to store for a period of five years information about all transactions, users’ identification data and other materials related to their interaction with customers, including business correspondence.
Crypto exchanges in Uzbekistan will be allowed to receive remuneration for their services and determine procedures for charging fees. Their operators will be able to organize exchange transactions with residents and non-residents. According to Mirziyoyev’s decree these transactions can involve the acquisition and/or alienation of crypto assets in exchange for the national and foreign fiat currencies, as well as the exchange of certain cryptocurrencies with other digital coins.
Uzbekistan to Allocate Plots for Crypto Mining Facilities
The resolution of Uzbekistan’s head of state also briefly mentions cryptocurrency mining. According to the document, the state-controlled energy companies, “Uzbekenergo” and “Uzbekgidroenergo”, will be allocating land plots for industrial-scale mining operations using over 100 KW/h of electricity without holding auctions. These locations will be designated in coordination with the National Project Management Agency under the President’s administration.
What do you think about the measures to legalize crypto trading in Uzbekistan? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Official website of the President of Uzbekistan.
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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.”
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.
News.Bitcoin.com reported in November on the first Belarusian cryptocurrency exchange gearing up to launch in the spring of next year.
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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