As authorities in the top Swiss city (Lugano) desire that the city become a regional crypto hub, they have made several cryptos (especially BTC and ETH) a legal tender.
During a March 3 live-streamed event titled “Lugano’s Plan B,” Pietro Poretti confirmed the news that has been making rounds for a while now. Paolo Ardoino (Tether’s CTO) and Michele Foletti (the city’s Mayor) were with Poretti as he made the announcement. Lugano is inhabited by 63K people (which makes it a city and municipality in Switzerland), and it is part of the Ticino canton district.
Tether operations limited (issuers of the world’s largest stablecoin, USDT) will provide the tech backup for this project. Asides from adopting cryptos (including USDT) as a legal tender, the city’s LVGA points payment token will also be accepted as a legal tender.
Following El Salvador’s Footsteps
Like El Salvador has done, Lugano also plans to enable crypto payments so that its residents can settle financial transactions (especially settling their recurring bills and paying their taxes) using the approved cryptos. In his opinion, Tether’s CTO stated that “we can only imagine what this policy will do for a city in Europe’s epicenter compared to El Salvador. After El Salvador adopted BTC as a legal tender, its GDP surged by 11%, while revenue from its tourism industry increased by 35%.”
With the crypto adoption settled, the next phase is to develop a physical structure at the city’s center, a hub for new crypto and blockchain firms. There are also other initiatives in the agreement between Lugano and Tether asides from the crypto and blockchain hub.
Part of the agreement is for Tether to support new blockchain-based businesses financially. Also, Tether is expected to educate Lugano residents about cryptos and their relevance. Part of the announcement claimed that up to 500 scholarships would be available for grabs through the partnership between research institutes and local universities.
Powering BTC Operations With Environmentally-Friendly Natural Resources
An area of focus for this huge project is a green environment. Tether has assured Lugano authorities and residents that only environmentally-friendly resources will power BTC mining operations. Thus, enabling these operations becomes the basis of developing renewable energy in the city.
Lugano Mayor (Michele Foletti) added that “our main aim is to make the city better in all ramifications through technology. We are convinced that this technology can help us achieve and surpass our aims. Our new partnership, Tether, shows us that there is more we can achieve with this technology than we have previously imagined.”
Foletti further revealed that the city had made remarkable progress before this partnership with Tether. He cited projects such as the Lugano digital franc, the myLugano app, the LVGA points payment token, and the 3Achain (an EVM-compatible city blockchain) as examples of the progress made so far. Ardoino also added that “we are convinced that Lugano will soon be a model of crypto and blockchain adoption for other cities around the world.”