The Crypto Economy of Costa Rica

Whilst some countries have taken a harsh stance on crypto- think Egypt, Bolivia, Colombia, and China- others have welcomed it with open arms.

An increasing number of savvy-states such as Malta and Switzerland have become pioneers in the sector- legislating at at local level in favour of the industry and attracting billions of dollars worth of crypto-business to their shores. But what about Costa Rica?

Latin America is known historically for being somewhat unstable, politically, but Costa Rica stands out as a prime example of peace and stability. The nation is the oldest democracy in the region and this combined with its favourable business environment and flexible yet supportive legal structures mean Costa Rica is a great location for budding business owners.

Billed as an “emerging crypto hub”, Costa Rica looks set to become a blockchain powerhouse of the future. But how?

Crypto and Businesses

The Costa Rica government takes a favourable stance towards cryptocurrency and it is one of only a handful of countries where employers are allowed to pay their staff in crypto. Article 166 of the labour law states that salary payments up to the national minimum wage must be paid in fiat currency, and anything over can be paid in Bitcoin or other.

As a result of this friendly approach to cryptocurrency from the government, it is no surprise that the adoption of crypto in the country is on the rise. Both members of the public, and businesses are keen to get involved in the industry and a growing number of foreign businesses are relocating.

The Adoption of Cryptocurrency in Costa Rica

Wherever you are, the chances are you might struggle to find high street retailers or restaurants that will accept cryptocurrency from you in exchange for goods or services. In Costa Rica however, things are a little different.

There are many places where you can shop with cryptocurrency- high streets, boutiques, cafes, and even luxury car retailers all accept some of the most well known coins on the market. It comes as no surprise that online merchants in the country also widely accept crypto-payments. Last but not least, AlfaTop allows its users to top up their mobile phones on any of the country’s main networks, with any of the top five cryptocurrencies.

Crypto in Costa Rica

Considering all these positives, it is clear to see why Costa Rica is a popular jurisdiction of choice for crypto businesses looking to relocate.

Here are a selection of some of the most interesting projects currently underway in the country.

EOS Costa Rica

EOS is a blockchain platform which is used for the development of decentralised apps. Posing serious competition to Ethereum, some believe that it could overtake it in terms of popularity. EOS has over 30 block producers whose task it is to create and maintain the infrastructure that is required to run EOS- one of these producers is in Costa Rica.

As well as setting up a base in Costa Rica, EOS plans to run a number of education initiatives throughout the region as well as contributing to the advancement of blockchain governance, whilst remaining politically neutral.

Nimiq

Whilst millions of people across the world “get” crypto, there are still some that find it a bit hard to understand.Nimiq hopes to change that by making cryptocurrency more accessible to the masses by lowering the barrier to adoption.

A payment system powered by browser-based blockchain, Nimiq uses NIM tokens to transfer value within its ecosystem. Based in Costa Rica, the project aims to get more merchant adoption as well as to allow e-businesses around the world to accept NIM as a payment method.

Conclusion

There is no doubt that crypto and blockchain are not going anywhere any time soon and Costa Rica’s popularity as a destination of choice is set to continue increasing. With a supportive government and regulatory regime, and a population ready to adopt other options asides from fiat currency, it is a perfect combination of facts for crypto-success.

Fast Offshore are leading advisors in the blockchain services and ICO sector, having assisted a number of clients in setting up their interests. We are able to assist with regulatory advice, white paper drafting and review, company incorporation, and even advice on how to structure your ICO. We can also guide you through the complexities of tokenomics whilst ensuring that you are fully compliant with all AML and compliance matters.

Take the leap, contact us today.