With a tweet, the Swiss non-profit company specializing in blockchain and cryptocurrency 2B4CH, launched a proposal to hold a referendum. It is asking to approve the inclusion of Bitcoin in the Federal Constitution of Switzerland. As explained by the company, this is an idea whose details have not yet been defined.
Switzerland looks to the future with a referendum on Bitcoin
According to the company, there are at least 100,000 bitcoin and cryptocurrency enthusiasts in Switzerland who could vote “Yes” to the referendum and give a big boost to its eventual approval.
Switzerland has long been regarded as one of the most cryptocurrency-friendly countries and is home to many crypto-related companies and institutions.
In September 2020, the Swiss parliament unanimously passed a law, the Distributed Electronic Registers Act, which allows cryptocurrency companies to tokenize shares, bonds and other financial instruments.
Zug, a small capital city in the canton of the same name, has long since become a major hub for crypto companies from around the world. It has been called the “Crypto Valley”, thanks also to a very favourable tax system. For about a year now, it has also been possible to pay taxes in Bitcoin and Ethereum in the Swiss canton.
Switzerland was one of the first countries in the world to enact a law regulating cryptocurrencies.
2018 referendum in favour of cryptocurrencies
In June 2018, a referendum on currency sovereignty was held, in which nearly 500,000 Swiss citizens cast their votes in favour of a financial system that was no longer regulated by banks. This referendum prevented banks from “creating” money electronically when lending beyond their cash reserves.
It seemed obvious to many that the referendum was a clear endorsement of the cryptocurrency system. This is because it could have taken away the monopoly of money creation from the banking system, which, even in Switzerland, does not look favourably on digital currencies.
The communiqué of the Swiss Banking Association was extremely harsh on the outcome of the referendum at the time. It had in fact stated that:
“The Swiss Bankers Association resolutely rejects the full-money initiative. The existing monetary and financial system offers undeniable advantages and has proven to work very well in the service of people and the economy.”
In the last two years, even the Swiss banking system seems to have changed its opinion on cryptocurrencies, considering that many financial institutions have opened up to trading.
Last September, the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) approved the Crypto Market Index Fund, the first crypto investment fund in the country. This means that Swiss mutual funds will now be able to offer their clients direct exposure to cryptocurrency-related instruments.
So this new referendum, if approved, could be an important new step towards the mass adoption of cryptocurrencies in the country.