In the city of Lugano in Switzerland, many local businesses are now accepting cryptocurrencies as ‘de facto’ legal tender. More than 200 local shops and businesses in the city can now use cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Tether to pay for parking tickets, public service and tuition fees.
The news was announced during the live event on Youtube, which aimed at the city’s adoption of crypto. Tether’s chief technical officer, Paolo Ardoino said that the company set up a 3 million-Swiss franc fund to encourage the adoption of Bitcoin (BTC) and Tether (USDT) for shops and businesses across the Southern city of Switzerland.
Tether Operations Limited also signed a partnership agreement with the administration of Lugano that adopts cryptocurrency for tax payments. Together with the city administration, Tether also established the Centre of Excellence for Blockchain Adoption.
Ardoino stated that the collaboration aims to transform Lugano city into a major blockchain hub in Europe.
‘We want to show that these tools, these instruments, these currencies that were created can be put to work in a vibrant environment like the city of Lugano,’ he said.
Up to 100 Swiss francs will be funded to help finance startup companies based on blockchain technology, which can cost up to US$1 billion. In addition, it will also support the city of Lugano when it comes to providing industry education by collaborating with research institutions and universities.
Tether and Lugano also plan to implement the Lightning Network to Bitcoin’s blockchain to solve the scalability problems of BTC in the city. The Lightning Network will allow transactions between parties even if they are not part of the blockchain.
As per Ardoino, the El Salvador lawmakers contributed to the adoption of cryptocurrency in the city. In September 2021, El Salvador’s Bitcoin Law allowed residents and visitors of the country to use BTC alongside the US Dollar to pay for goods and services.
Lugano is the largest city in Switzerland with roughly 63,000 people and will host the upcoming Bitcoin World Forum conference this October. There are also other cities and cantons in Switzerland such as Zermatt and Zug that allow its citizens to pay taxes using cryptocurrency.
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