As most countries look to crack-down on Initial Coin Offerings, Bermuda is looking to cash in on them.
The small British Overseas Territory first professed their positive stance towards cryptocurrencies and blockchain in November of 2017 with the announcement of their Blockchain Legal and Regulatory Working Group. The goal of this stance towards the cryptocurrency markets is to drive economic activity and to make Bermuda a “destination for utility tokens, tokenized securities, cryptocurrencies, and coin offerings.”
David Burt, the premier of Bermuda, said last year that they are “committed to building upon its position as an innovative international business center, and is considering a complementary regulatory framework covering the promotion and sale of utility tokens, aligned with the DLT framework.”
In recent weeks, Burt expressed that Bermuda would be taking a measured approach to regulation and would try to make the island “a global leader in the fintech space.”
Bermuda has served as the headquarters of several ICOs already, including Unikrn, an e-sports startup. Although the Bermudan government is looking to regulate ICOs, they want to continue to be an environment that incubates new technologies emerging from the ICO space.
A recent proposal from the government would require that companies looking to start an ICO ask permission from the minister of finance before starting operations. The company would be required to turn over information about both the company and the digital asset it is looking at issuing, including the rights of those who purchase that digital asset.
Regulation uncertainty in countries like the United States may cause many companies to question the risks of starting an ICO, but Bermuda’s goal of regulation certainty would thwart these fears. The hope is that regulation certainty will direct many companies to open operations on the island, increasing its economic strength.
The draft bill for ICO regulations will circulate through parliament soon, with a deliberation occurring “at the earliest opportunity.”