Spanish Opposition Introduces Regulations; Sees Spain as a Crypto Leader

In an effort to promote the country’s role as a blockchain leader, Spain’s Partido Popular will introduce a draft bill on a blockchain regulatory framework.

Spain’s main opposition party, Partido Popular (“People’s Party”, PP), is set to introduce a draft proposal on cryptocurrency and blockchain regulations. PP secretary Teodoro Garcia Egea announced the decision during the opening ceremony of ISDE Blockchain and Law research center in Madrid on December 10, reported Spanish newspaper La Vanguardia.

According to the publication, García Egea claimed regulations in the space were necessary to “provide security to the investors” and ensure “new cryptocurrencies can be introduced by anyone who wants to”.

The secretary went on to list the advantages cryptocurrencies have over traditional money, and compared their effect on the financial market to that of the introduction of the mechanical textile weaving loom.

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The PP secretary stressed Spain’s objective must be to become a leader in blockchain technology, and that such regulations are required to help achieve that goal. Garcia Egea also advocated for the creation of a national council on cryptocurrencies, as well as tax breaks for blockchain startups and companies that implement decentralized technologies.

One of Spain’s four major parties, Partido Popular was in power up until June of this year, when a corruption scandal forced the then-leader of PP Mariano Rajoy to step down as a prime minister. Although PP supported blockchain initiatives and reforms under Rajoy’s leadership, the current government of Spanish Socialist Workers' Party has remained critical of the cryptocurrency space. In November, the Spanish Ministry of Finance announced plans to inspect the holdings and operations of 15,000 taxpayers suspected of tax evasion and fraud. Any capital gains made on digital assets are subject to a tax rate of between 19% and 23%, according to Spanish law.

At the same time, last month Spanish-based Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria settled a $170M syndicated loan with blockchain technology. In April BBVA became the first multinational bank to release a loan through blockchain.

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