Central American lawmakers are optimistic about the mainstream adoption of cryptocurrency, as Panama became the second country in the region to submit a bill in parliament that seeks the legal status of Bitcoin and Ethereum.
The country’s legislature tabled the bill regulating the country’s cryptocurrency on September 6th. According to the bill, the country hopes to be “compatible with blockchain, crypto assets and the Internet”.
Central American Countries that Support Crypto
Panama’s move came the day before El Salvador legalized Bitcoin and made it legal tender. However, Panama’s bill is very different from El Salvador’s bill, which makes the adoption of Bitcoin mandatory.
Although Salvadoran companies must accept Bitcoin as payment, they can choose the state infrastructure to instantly convert Bitcoin to legal tender, but Panama gives its citizens the option.
However, the most prominent part of Panama’s crypto bill is that the country will allow its citizens to pay taxes in cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum. This can be considered the most important review as the government itself is ready to accept digital currencies.
According to a tweet from Panamanian pro-crypto lawmaker Gabriel Silva, the proposed law has the potential to help the country create thousands of jobs and stresses that it has the potential to create new investment opportunities.
He added that if the law is passed, it will recognize Bitcoin as an alternative global payment method for “any civil or commercial activity that is not prohibited by the legal system of the Republic of Panama”. He also believes that crypto will make the government more transparent.
Other Central American countries are also interested in legalizing cryptocurrencies. Honduras, a neighbouring country to El Salvador, recently installed the first bitcoin ATM that allows citizens to buy cryptocurrencies using local legal tender.