10 blockchain & virtual currency companies will have the opportunity to operate in the Philippines’ Cagayan Economic Zone. These companies can take advantage of tax perks and at the same time generate employment in the region.
Mr. Raul Lambino, Chief of the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA), stated that CEZA now allows 10 cryptocurrency and blockchain companies to enter.
“We are about to licence 10 platforms for cryptocurrency exchange. They are Japanese, Hong Kong, Malaysians, Koreans. They can go into cryptocurrency mining, initial coin offerings, or they can go into exchange,”
However, the exchange of fiat to cryptocurrency and vice versa must be done offshore. This is to avoid infringing Philippine regulations. If the businesses want to operate this function, they must register with the Philippine Central Bank.
One of the many plans in CEZA, as shared by Mr. Raul Lambino, is to have a blockchain and financial technology university in the hub to provide workers for the incoming companies.
On February 2018, it is reported that CEZA and Sinosun made an agreement to develop the Cagayan Special Economic Zone and Free Port (CSEZFP) with the help of a Chinese company.
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Blockchain and virtual currency companies need to invest at least $1 million and pay up to $100,000 license fees to set up their base in the economic zone.
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) does not endorse cryptocurrencies and never ceases to warn the public about its volatility. The Philippines’ Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) also recently released a list of unregistered cryptocurrency schemes the public has to watch out for. The Department of Finance’s Insurance Commission joined in by releasing a public warning about cryptocurrency but is open to technological advancements and will warrant regulations to insurance, pre-need and HMO industries if needed.