Switzerland is a country that is well known as a place which always welcomes innovation within their economy. This is mainly because of the government policy that often supports the growth of innovative industry such as fintech. In fact, Switzerland is one of the countries in the world where people can launch initial coin offerings easily. Despite the excitement around cryptocurrencies, Swiss regulators have expressed their concern about fraud and scams which are rampant within the industry. Also, the cryptocurrency craze has also brought concerns about Bitcoin and many other cryptocurrencies being in a speculative bubble.
This country has its eyes set on being a cryptocurrency friendly nation. In fact, more blockchain companies are moving to Switzerland to capitalize on the government’s business-friendly reputation. This is seemingly good news for Switzerland as it was only a few decades ago that a scandal rocked the country where traditional private banks helped wealthy clients evade taxes.
In every country that wants to accept cryptocurrency, there is always a dilemma on how they will balance the need for innovation while also protecting investors. Between politicians and regulators, this is a common dilemma. Some do not want to allow so much freedom to the point that it becomes a wild west for digital innovation. Therefore, the government has recently created a working group which focuses on ICO and how they can regulate the space. Despite this, it won’t necessarily mean that the government will strictly regulate the space like some countries.
In fact, the Swiss government wants to establish some discipline within the space so that people don’t get scammed. Hence, businesses that enter the country adhere to a certain regulation. Undoubtedly, Swiss will be looking at neighboring countries as a benchmark. The Swiss government will also be prioritizing the integrity of the Swiss financial market when deciding which regulatory measure to take on.
The cryptocurrency haven
If you’re searching for a country to create an ICO, Switzerland is the place to go. This is because Switzerland has an ideal environment for cryptocurrency enthusiasts and blockchain start-ups. On top of that, the country has a huge network of rich investors and technology specialists. This is a good combination of factors that you need to push for an innovative space that requires a lot of capital funding. There are already a lot of inquiries from start-ups around the world about how they can create a Swiss ICO.
Blockchain, which is the technology that powers Bitcoin is at the core of every ICO. In fact, this technology has been fuelling the technology fantasies of investors. In fact, the presence of ICO has been causing concern in the venture capital is industry because it creates a whole new model of crowdfunding. Also, the creators of ICO don’t have to give up ownership of the firm. Instead, they can do offer financial returns to their backers. Therefore, anyone who owns a smartphone can invest in a startup.
Despite this, the term ICO is causing concern because it is associated with people trying a get rich. In the first place, tokens were never meant as a speculative investment. In many countries around the world including European Union countries, governments have issued warnings about the potential dangers of initial coin offerings.
Factors that contribute to ICO success in Switzerland
Th Switzerland government’s openness towards innovation has been the main contributing factor towards the ICO success within the country. In fact, the Swiss government is one of the few countries around the world that have a deep understanding of how the technology works. For true appreciation to happen for cryptocurrencies and blockchain, one must understand the complexities of the system. Despite this, the Swiss government will investigate an ICO if there are possible breaches of regulations such as money laundering or terrorist financing.
Critics believe that Switzerland’s approach towards cryptocurrency is good to bring about growth, but it may be too opportunistic at some point. It may also face competition is from its neighboring countries which can lead to damaging competition. Moreover, Switzerland should also consider consumer and market protection instead of just being too welcoming of the blockchain industry.
Proponents of cryptocurrencies believe that there is no need for the government to intervene in the regulation of cryptocurrencies. In fact, these proponents believe that the technology will become a self-regulating mechanism. Similar to how users of Airbnb will not rent an apartment and someone who have no reviews, the cryptocurrency market will become more transparent over time.
Despite the warm welcome towards cryptocurrency from Switzerland, it is unlikely that Switzerland will remain so liberal. The company government is still concerned about the chances of these cryptocurrencies being used to launder money. In a country that is wealthy as Switzerland, the possibility of money being laundered is high.
In the event where an ICO cannot follow the rules set by Switzerland, the traditional banks will typically turn away the funds. To implement customer protections, Switzerland banks have tried to categorize the different type of ICOs. With the increasing amount of regulations within the space, proponents of cryptocurrencies believe that this can be counter-beneficial for the growth of the space.
Wrapping it up
For Switzerland, having a competitive edge in the blockchain technologies industry is very important to them. By providing clear regulatory guidelines on how ICOs and blockchain start-ups are expected to operate within the country, this can hopefully encourage the growth of more genuine ICOs. The government has a clear interest in being the leader for ICOs by considering the right balance between innovation and providing a stable regulatory environment.