The government’s policy White Paper entitled, “The Future of Digital Assets in The Bahamas’ was tabled in the Senate on Monday, 3 rd May, 2022. The motion was advanced by Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs, Senator the Hon. L. Ryan Pinder. He said that this proposal is an innovative one for the country.
“What we propose is truly innovative. We are determined to set The Bahamas on a path, fully fit for the 21st century and beyond, that truly delivers on the brighter future for all,”said Mr. Pinder. He also announced the composition of the advisory committee for the development of the digital asset policy and industry of The Bahamas.
“The Digital Advisory Panel is comprised of private sector expertise in key areas of the industry. The panel consists of the following persons: Attorney General; Gowan Bowe; Aliya Allen; Brian Jones; Delphine Caspar; Emmanuel Komolafe; Rhonda Eldridge; Dellareese Taylor Russell and Kelly Banks,” he said.
The Panel, he explained, will keep digital asset development, emerging trends and associated risks, constantly under review. “The Panel will be charged with keeping the Government, the Digital Asset Policy Committee, and appropriate regulators, fully updated with relevant information,” said Mr. Pinder. “They will be expected to recommend any necessary changes to policy, the DARE Act and other legislation, to ensure that The Bahamas maintains its place as a well-regulated digital asset jurisdiction, while at the same time, continuing to remain relevant and attractive for digital asset businesses to operate from, to grow and to prosper.”
The main objectives of the White Paper include: to explore new opportunities in the digital asset landscape; to improve the attractiveness of the country as a well-regulated financial jurisdiction; (where necessary), to clarify and expand the scope of legislative framework; to encourage innovation in the Fintech space and identify emerging technologies that would help maintain the country’s competitive edge; to explore linkages between the Bahamas’ existing financial services toolkit; to develop the necessary skills and expertise; to work with the Central Bank to ensure that policies are adjusted and clarified; to build capacity and expand the resources of the SCB in order to support and enhance its role as the pre-eminent digital asset regulator and to enable it to become a global centre of excellence; and to provide sustainable funding for the digital asset policies, initiatives and programmers.
“Taken together, fulfillment of these objectives will encourage the growth of an exciting new industry while protecting consumers, businesses and investors,” the Senator explained. “They will also offer safeguards against systemic risks which may emerge. They will also help to promote and defend the competitiveness of The Bahamas and offer new opportunities for Bahamians and international investors alike. We wish for our country and our people to be seen as innovators, to stand among the first and best as a great place to do business.”