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Panama Postpones Crypto Legalization

President Laurentino Cortizo of Panama warned on Thursday that he will not sign the proposed crypto bill into law until it has rigorous anti-money laundering provisions. The ruling put pressure on cryptocurrency exchanges and businesses who were already planning to enter the industry.

Panama’s parliamentary assembly enacted a measure last month regulating cryptocurrency use and licensing cryptocurrency exchanges in the country. However, unless the president signs the bill, the acceptance of cryptocurrency in Panama is doubtful.

Panama’s President halts the implementation of a crypto-law.

According to Bloomberg, Panama’s President Laurentino Cortizo feels anti-money laundering regulations are critical for the country because it has been targeted for money laundering and other financial crimes. Panama has been added to the Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) “gray list” of nations with lax anti-money laundering laws.

“If I’m going to answer you right now with the information that I have, which is not enough, I will not sign that law. I have to be very careful if the law has clauses related to money laundering activities. Anti-money laundering activities are very important to us.”

According to Bloomberg, Panama’s President Laurentino Cortizo feels anti-money laundering regulations are critical for the country because it targets money laundering and other financial crimes. Panama is among to the Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) “gray list” of nations with lax anti-money laundering laws.

The Cortizo administration is currently implementing FATF recommendations to combat money laundering, terror financing, and financial crimes. Anti-money laundering regulations are, in fact, useful to crypto legislation. Crypto assets’ adoption and commercialization in the country could improve offshore financial services even more.

The utilization of crypto assets for both private and public purposes will strengthen Panama’s financial services system. Furthermore, due to widespread internet use, banks will become more crypto-friendly, and crypto assets may be able to assist the unbanked.

The bill, according to Panamanian congressman Gabriel Silva, allows for the trade and usage of crypto assets. So, the issue of digital securities, the creation of new payment systems, and the tokenization of precious metals.

Experts, on the other hand, believe that accepting cryptocurrency will make Panama a location where financial openness is missing.
Crypto payments bypass due diligence procedures, putting Panama in a vulnerable situation.

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