Cuban Central Bank Officially Announces: VASP License in May

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2022-04-30 19:45:24

The Gazette further determined that the decision will take effect 20 days after its publication, i.e. May 16.

In a move that could spur the growth of Cuba’s nascent tech industry, Banco Central de Cuba (BCC), the country’s central bank, will begin licensing Bitcoin (BTC) and other developers other virtual asset service providers (VASPs).

According to Official Gazette 43 published on Tuesday, which contains a resolution of the Central Bank of Cuba, anyone who wants to provide services related to virtual assets must obtain a prior license from the central bank. The newspaper wrote:

“The Central Bank of Cuba, in reviewing the licensing request, evaluates the legitimacy, opportunities and socio-economic benefits of the initiative, the characteristics of the project, the responsibilities of the applicants and the experience theirs in action.”
Furthermore, the document states that those entities that fail to operate under this license and are required to do so face penalties in accordance with applicable banking and financial rules in the island nation. The Official Gazette further specifies that this decision will take effect 20 days after its publication, i.e. May 16. It also notes that the license will be renewed for a second year.

“Virtual Asset Service Provider Licenses are approved for a period of one year, renewable for a second year, due to the experimental and novel nature of this type of activity.”
The Gazette also emphasizes among the bank’s provisions that VASPs are not allowed to discontinue their services without the approval of the central bank.

As reported by Cointelegraph last September, the BCC issued a ruling defining cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin as a legitimate payment method. Although the organization has made reservations about the dangers of using cryptocurrencies, the central bank is considered the only entity authorized to issue licenses to the VASP.

By legalizing virtual assets, Cubans can now enjoy more accessible remittance services and the ability to send and receive money freely around the world, which could trigger a cultural wave. new in local technology development in the context of US sanctions 60 years. Under growing pressure from Washington, global remittance companies have largely left the country.

Indeed, the country is following the same path as El Salvador and the Central African Republic in accepting Bitcoin amid escalating US sanctions and the economic impact of COVID-19. With virtual currencies linked to the prospect of financial sovereignty for many Cubans, interest in Cuba has grown over the past few years.


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