Panama’s Supreme Court to rule on cryptocurrency legislation – Crypto News Today

Panama’s Supreme Court to rule on cryptocurrency legislation

The Panamanian crypto bill saga has reached a new chapter, with the country’s Supreme Court set to decide the future of the local crypto industry.

Panamanian President Laurentino Cortizo on January 26 shipped crypto legislation passed last year before the High Court for review, claiming that the so-called “Crypt Bill” violates fundamental principles of the constitution and is unenforceable.

The Supreme Court must now decide whether to declare Bill 697 unenforceable or approve it with modifications.

According to According to an official statement, the president’s office considers sections 34 and 36 of the bill unenforceable as they violate the separation of state powers and establish administrative structures within the government.

President Cortizo also argued that the bill was approved through an improper procedure after his partial veto of the legislation in June. At the time, the president argued that the bill needed more work to comply with new regulations recommended by the Financial Action Task Force aimed at improving budget transparency and preventing money laundering.

Related: The 5 Most Important Regulatory Developments For Crypto In 2022

A dispute between the National Assembly of Panama and the government centered on this bill. In April, Panamanian lawmakers passed a legislative proposal to regulate cryptocurrencies in the country, including Bitcoin. President Cortizo, however, warned a few weeks later that he would not sign it unless it included additional anti-money laundering (AML) rules.

The bill was introduced in September 2021, aiming to make the country “compatible with the digital economy, blockchain, crypto assets and the internet”. It was withdrawn from the Economic Affairs Committee on April 21 and approved a few days later.

Based on the legislation, Panamanians “may freely agree to the use of crypto assets, including but not limited to Bitcoin and Ethereum” as an alternative means of payment for “any civil or commercial transaction.”

Additionally, the bill would regulate the tokenization of precious metals and the issuance of digital value. Identity digitization using blockchain or distributed ledger technology would also be explored by the government innovation authority.