Panama Crypto Bill Stalled For Now: President Vetoes Bill Citing Concerns


Laurentino Cortizo, the President of Panama, has not given his assent to Bill no. 697, the nation’s crypto bill, citing concerns. The passing of the bill would have made Bitcoin legal tender in the country.

The bill is now up for revision and will go up for another vote in the National Assembly. The President of Panama has called for amendments and said that it needs to be adapted to the standards and rules that regulate the national financial system. The crypto bill will once more be debated in the National Assembly before its fate is decided.

Even as recently as April it appeared that the tax haven in Central America was on course to become the latest in a line of Latin countries that were allowing and even encouraging its citizens to switch to Bitcoin. The approval of the bill in the legislation would have paved the way for the use of Bitcoin as a legal currency.

Panama Crypto Bill Paused To Include Sufficient Anti-Money Laundering Clauses

But Panama’s president believes that he needs more assurances that the crypto law would conform to anti-money laundering standards worldwide and hinted that he would not give a total ascent to it. Cortizo said that there was a need for caution, and he has to ensure that the crypto law has sufficient safeguards against money laundering.

The bill once passed will allow Panamanians to use cryptocurrency to buy goods. It would turn Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, and other currencies into legal tender for all commercial, legal, and civil transactions. This includes paying government taxes, duties, and fees.

Panama also recognizes the decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) formally. They are recognized as legal bodies and enable Panama to hand out tokenized commodities and securities like gold through the security token offerings (STOs).

Legislator Gabriel Silva, who was behind the drafting of the crypto bill wrote on social media that the President of Panama had lost an opportunity to attract investments, generate jobs, and integrate innovation and technology into the government sector.