After its approval from the Central Bank of Cuba, all services utilizing Bitcoin and other digital assets will be authorized to operate in the Caribbean island as of May 16th. However, they must first apply for an operating license from the issuing institute.
Activities using cryptocurrencies were legalized on Tuesday, April 26th, after a meeting held by the nation’s issuing body, which approved measures to regulate the granting of licenses to companies that trade in cryptocurrency.
In accordance with the provisions of ‘Official Gazette No. 43 Ordinary‘, the Central Bank will be in charge of approving applications for operating licenses with Bitcoin and other virtual assets for natural and legal persons.
"[To] establish the specific requirements for the authorization, operation, regulation, supervision, surveillance, corrective mechanisms and cancellation of licenses for virtual asset service providers that operate in and from the national territory," the document states.
The resolution outlines that:
“The Central Bank of Cuba, when considering the license request, evaluates the legality, opportunity and socioeconomic interest of the initiative, the characteristics of the project, the responsibility of the applicants and their experience in the activity. The Central Bank of Cuba issues the license, after consulting the Cryptoactive Group.” Likewise, it warns that local and foreign companies operating without a legal license will face the sanctions established in the banking and financial legislation put in force within the country.
The regulations indicate that operational licenses will have a duration of one year and can be extended for an additional year “given the experimental and innovative nature of this type of activity.”
With this new step, Cuba continues to move rapidly towards adopting Bitcoin as legal tender. The government had already authorized the use of cryptocurrencies as a payment method as of September 15th of last year.