Bataan, an economic zone in the Philippines, is seeking to become the country’s digital currency and blockchain hub with the passing of a new Act that allows the local regulator to oversee the industry.
In a recent announcement, the Freeport Area of Bataan (FAB) revealed that the passing of Republic Act No. 11659 paves the way for the ecozone to become an offshore financial center that embraces emerging fintech markets.
In its new capacity, the Authority of the Freeport Area of Bataan (FAB) will be able to license, register, supervise and approve local and foreign business entities engaging in industries such as artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, virtual reality, the Internet of Things, and smart cities.
The AFAB will also now be tasked with overseeing blockchain and distributed ledger technology within the Free Area of Bataan, which is one of over 400 operating economic zones in the Philippines.
In its effort to market the economic zone as a blockchain-friendly destination, the FAB, led by Administrator Emmanuel D. Pineda, attended the recently-concluded AIBC Dubai Summit, where leaders from the blockchain and digital currency industry congregated. Jimmy Nguyen, the Founding President of the BSV Blockchain Association, led the BSV delegation, which included Gap600’s Daniel Lipshitz and InvoiceMate’s Muhammad Salman Anjum at the event. The leaders hammered home the point that blockchain needs to be useful throughout the two-day summit.
In an additional effort to make FAB a digital currency-friendly destination, top Filipino blockchain firms have partnered with the aim of growing the Bataan Blockchain City.
Francis Jimenez, the CEO of Acceptar Group, one of the firms behind the initiative, commented, “Helping establish blockchain companies in the Philippines will speed up mass-adoption of crypto and attract leaders in the industry to invest and setup their base here.”
Emmanuel Samson, the co-founder of Impero Group, another company highly involved in the initiative, invited all blockchain and fintech firms “to join us in developing AFAB’s regulated digital ecosystem and all within Bataan’s Blockchain City.”
The ecozone’s efforts have already started bearing fruit. Last year, Global Tradex, a digital asset and NFT exchange, set up shop in FAB, claiming the regulatory-friendly approach taken by the authorities was a big factor in its decision.
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