Confederation sees great potential in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies and wants to bring the industry to Switzerland. But the strategy is not without risk.
In five or ten years Switzerland will become “Crypto nation”. At least that is the goal of Minister of Economics Johann Schneider-Ammann (FDP), who recently spoke at a crypto conference in St. Moritz.
In any case, Confederation is on a good way. Canton of Zug has been internationally known as “Crypto Valley” for some time now because more and more companies from the Bitcoin, Blockchain and cryptocurrency sectors are settling there. Few weeks ago, world’s greatest manufacturer of specialized Bitcoin computers, Chinese Bitmain, announced that it would open its first European branch in Zug.
Cryptocurrencies fit with Switzerland
According to Schneider-Ammann, cryptocurrencies are an ideal match for Switzerland’s self-image.
“Country has grown big by everything that means innovation. Now we have arrived at an innovative moment in the financial world. Cryptocurrencies are part of the fourth industrial revolution.”
Well-known personalities of the Swiss banking industry see great cryptocurrency potential. Former UBS CEO Oswald Grübel particularly likes Bitcoin’s status as a “world currency”, which is only traded on its own on the Internet.
“Since we no longer have bank secrecy and our banks exchange account information of their customers with over 100 countries, these people are looking for alternative forms of investment.”
said Grübel in the “Handelszeitung”.
Is risk too big for Switzerland?
However, through this perspective, Switzerland could become a target again. US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin recently warned that Bitcoin could become the new “Swiss bank account”. This will and must be prevented!
Federal government remains positive
Schneider-Ammann stays calm at first. It was “too early” for extensive regulations. He also warns against overenthusiasm. Only people who are heavily involved in financial markets should engage in cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.
“The one who does not dare, who does not win” seems to be the guiding principle of the Federal Council. In interview with the SRF, Schneider-Ammann said: “We are in an initial phase with special risks, but if we are no longer willing to take risks, we also open up any opportunities.”
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