Kicking off the first Crypto Bahamas conference at Baha Mar Convention Centre yesterday, Prime Minister Philip “Brave” Davis said the arrival of FTX, a cryptocurrency exchange, underscores that The Bahamas is ready to be a home for global leaders in the crypto space.
Davis said the country is open for business and is moving to the forefront in the digital asset industry.
“Back in 2019, our Central Bank launched the Sand Dollar, the world’s first digital currency,” he said.
“And just last week, my government launched a policy white paper, outlining ‘The Future of Digital Assets in The Bahamas’.”
The white paper outlines a framework “to transform The Bahamas into the leading digital asset hub in the Caribbean, and a global leader in the progressive regulation of businesses in this profoundly innovative space”.
“The Bahamas is not only open and ready for business, but moving to the forefront of this most exciting era of digital asset innovation,” Davis said.
“For generations, our people have developed a unique expertise as leading professionals in international financial services. As a result, The Bahamas has an extensive capacity of human capital positioned to assist all in the fintech space who look to do business here.
“In our policy white paper, you will also note the commitment of my government to provide the highest in tertiary education to Bahamians who want to be in the fintech and cryptocurrency space.
“The Bahamas, and Bahamians all across our archipelago, are ready and willing to partner with you to do business in our great country.
“I hope that consideration of the potential and possibilities in our country will feature in your discussions over these next few days.”
On Monday, FTX broke ground on its $60 million headquarters in The Bahamas.
FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried, 30, who has a net worth of $24 billion, reiterated yesterday that The Bahamas’ regulatory regime made it an attractive destination for his business.
On Monday, Bankman-Fried said the work that has been done by the Securities Commission of The Bahamas and the government went a long way in helping FTX to make the decision to move its company to this country.
The conference, presented by FTX and SALT, “is an invitation-only event featuring collaboration and networking among leading players in the crypto and traditional finance industry”.
The event, which ends tomorrow, features discussions and unique experiences in The Bahamas and will cover Bitcoin, DeFi, NFTs, regulation, Web3, gaming and more.
It has attracted a wide range of individuals, including former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair, former US President Bill Clinton, former White House director of communications and American financier Anthony Scaramucci, former US Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang, and NFL superstar Tom Brady, among others.
Blair and Clinton are set to address the conference today.
Davis told attendees “there are many pragmatic reasons to partner with us”.
“But we think you’ll also fall in love with our country and our people,” he said.
The prime minister added, “As you all know, change is certain; progress is not. Likewise, I am determined to make sure that in my country, this era of dramatic change is also an era of progress.”