Liechtenstein adopts Bitcoin as legal payment option

The Prime Minister of Liechtenstein has announced plans for the country to start accepting Bitcoin as a legal payment option.

Prime Minister Daniel Risch, who is also the finance minister of Liechtenstein, made the announcement, reported by local news outlet Handelsblatt, stating that the country will be adopting Bitcoin:

“A payment option with Bitcoin is coming.”

When will Liechtenstein adopt Bitcoin for payments?

The Prime Minister didn’t give a time frame for the adoption of Bitcoin. It is also likely that Bitcoin will be used as a gateway-payment, rather than a direct transaction using the cryptocurrency. More details are yet to be offered, but the country and national banks will likely accept deposits in Bitcoin and trade them for the fiat currency, the Swiss franc. This allows citizens to pay for goods and services using Bitcoin without impacting the economy with Bitcoin’s possible price swings. Risch has said that Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are currently too risky for the country to hold as investments, but this might change with price stability.

Liechtenstein is not a direct member of the European Union, but it is part of the region where the Markets in Crypto Assets (MiCA) law might apply. If Liechtenstein falls under the MiCA regulation, cryptocurrency adoption and the broader blockchain industry might see a boost of endorsement in the country, especially with Risch’s crypto-friendliness.

Cryptocurrency hubs in Europe

There are a few countries within Europe that are embracing crypto and Bitcoin adoption. According to a recent survey, Lisbon, Berlin, Zug, and Paris stand as the top cities that attract crypto communities and institutions in Europe. Liechtenstein, albeit much smaller than Portugal, Germany, Switzerland, and France, has become a well-established cryptocurrency hub in the European region. In 2019, the country set up a clear cryptocurrency infrastructure to help implement blockchain-based businesses in the country.

Currently, Zug and Lugano in Switzerland, accept Bitcoin for tax, public services, and as payment for certain private retailers.