A Panamanian lawmaker has tabled a bill that seeks to make digital currencies an alternative payment method at a time when the controversial Bitcoin law took effect in El Salvador.
We remind our readers that to invest in cryptocurrencies, it is already possible to use automatic trading software such as Bitcoin Pro.
Panama would become a more attractive country
Gabriel Silva, a Panamanian congressman, unveiled the latest bill on Twitter, saying it seeks to "make Panama a compatible country with blockchain, cryptographic assets and the Internet". Silva believes the bill, known as the cryptocurrency law, will create thousands of jobs, make the government transparent and attract investment.
Silva also touted support for innovation and expansion of existing financial products and services as some of the other benefits of the cryptocurrency law.
The bill recognizes the rapid growth of internet penetration in Panama in recent years and how this has played an important role in the growth of the country's economy. Blockchain technology and digital currencies are the next stage of this growth and Panama cannot risk being left behind, according to the proposed bill.
The cryptocurrency law has done many things right, including debunking the myth that digital currencies are a criminal haven.
“… In practice, their use for illegal activities is quite low. According to Chainanalysis statistics, in 2019 criminal activity using cryptocurrencies accounted for only 2,1% of all volume of cryptocurrency transactions and by 2020 illicit activity using cryptocurrencies had dropped to 0,34% " .
Furthermore, the blockchain allows authorities to easily track any illegal activity as it is transparent and immutable.
Some rumors are old to die
However, the bill also failed to highlight some aspects. The biggest, and most common, is that digital currencies are "potential long-term investments and hedges against inflation." This narrative, which has been widely sold by the pro-BTC faction, runs counter to Satoshi's view of Bitcoin as peer-to-peer electronic money.
El Salvador's bitcoin law went into effect this week (on September 7 specifically and not without controversy, protests and lawsuits). Panama intends to avoid the controversy that led to dissidence by forcing the use of digital currency. El Salvador law requires all economic agents to accept payments in BTC, whether they want to or not.
In Panama, merchants' acceptance of digital currency would be optional, with the future law recognizing digital currencies only as alternative payment methods.
And what do you think of this step towards cryptocurrencies made by Panama? Could South America become the new leading economy of the world? Let us know in the comments below.