The mayor of Lugano, who legalized Bitcoin and Tether in March last year, is positioning his city to become a true global hub for cryptocurrencies.
Lugano: the mayor is increasingly focusing on cryptocurrencies
According to Michele Foletti, the city’s flamboyant mayor, Lugano is set to become a hub for cryptocurrencies and to follow the example of El Salvador, which in September last year decided to legalize Bitcoin as an official currency in the country. In a tweet from 7 September, the mayor celebrated the first anniversary of the historic decision made by President Nayib Bukele.
"Congratulations to President @nayibbukele and all El Salvador citizens for the first anniversary of the #bitcoin law. Lugano🇨🇭is excited to follow this amazing journey, sharing our experiences. At @luganomycity we are waiting for @MilenaMayorga for the Lugano PlanB Forum”
— Michele Foletti (@MicheleLugano) September 7, 2022
Lugano has long become one of the most open cities for events, exhibitions, conferences and case studies and use cases related to the world of blockchain and cryptocurrencies. The mayor, in March, passed the resounding decision that a great many services, starting with taxes and fines, can safely be paid in Bitcoin or Tether, for those who wish to do so.
The fact that the city has partnered with Tether, which has long been under scrutiny, both for its corporate composition (it is headquartered in the Virgin Islands, one of the world’s last remaining tax havens) and for the composition of its capital escrow reserves, which many believe to be less than the approximately $67.5 billion in capitalization, which makes it the third most capitalized cryptocurrency after Bitcoin and Ethereum.
Lugano’s commitment to the spread of cryptocurrencies
Last summer, the city organized in-depth courses on cryptocurrencies and blockchain, called Plan ₿ summer. The courses, which were attended by about a hundred students from July 3 to 16, were designed to learn some of the most important techniques and secrets of the cryptocurrency business as it relates to the regulatory and technological implications they face.
The mayor is eager to establish the partnership with Tether to create an increasingly favorable ecosystem for cryptocurrencies in the Swiss-Italian city. As part of this ₿ Plan, which brings together the entire project related to the development of the crypto world in the city, Tether is creating a 100 million Swiss franc investment pool for startups wishing to develop the infrastructure needed to facilitate Bitcoin adoption and promote the position to companies that will bring expertise to the area.
In this way, Lugano, according to some, would like to compete with the Swiss-German city of Zug, north of Zurich, which is home to the famous blockchain development center “Crypto Valley.” It has been ranked as Europe’s fastest-growing tech community.
The partnership signed in March between Tether and the city of Lugano certainly aims to turn the city in the Canton of Ticino into a cryptocurrency capital of the world, on par with Dubai and Miami, where Mayor Francis Suarez, has long ruled that payments for many city services can also be made with cryptocurrencies and is himself getting part of his salary paid in Bitcoin.