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Author Topic: Cryptocurrency Regulations, Politics and Economy Around the World.  (Read 1135 times)
Svyat
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November 03, 2017, 08:39:13 PM
 #1

BTC Cryptocurrencies are the global phenomenon and to forecast its future we need to consider each World country's regulations of digital currencies as well as the international implications of those policies.
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Svyatoslav (Svet) Sedov


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November 03, 2017, 09:14:43 PM
 #2

Laos (Lao People's Democratic Republic)

Lao re-established the monarchy after obtaining its independence from France in 1953. Vietnam War (1955 - 1975), during which US dropped on Laos more than 2.5 million tons of bombs, became the turning point in country's modern history. In December 1975 the Laotian Civil War ended by local communist party, supported by Vietnam and USSR, proclaiming Lao the socialist state. Vietnam still plays a major role in Lao internal politics.

Lao People's Revolutionary Party (LPRP) is ruled by the "troyka" - Politburo, Secretariat and the Central Committee. It's the dominant political party in Lao, which President is, at the same time, the head of LPRP. In 149-members National Assembly of Laos 144 seats belong to LPRP, which makes Lao de-facto one-party communist state.

In 1990th, as a result of limited free-market reforms, a private entrepreneurship was allowed in the country. As a result, in the following decade Lao had managed to increase its agricultural production for more than 50%. Such industries as hydroelectricity, tourism and mining have been also growing very fast in this period. Lao GDP growth rate is still among the highest in the region (6-8%).

However, 80% of Laos population relies on subsistence agriculture, which constitutes 30% of GDP. On top of that, country's central authorities keep all major sectors of economy, including telecommunication, under their direct control. This does not create a healthy business climate for growth of small and medium enterprises in general and tech startups in particular. Startup ecosystem in Laos is centralized around the major, government controlled scientific institutions and its future perspectives are limited by ideology and bureaucratic red-tapes. On a positive side, growing economy and expanding supply of cheap, qualified workforce have created a number of niche market opportunities for local startup founders.

There aren't any specific laws in Laos regulating Bitcoin or crytocurrencies in general. That makes it technically legal to trade crypto or to organize a TGE in the country. However, it's not likely that the present state of affairs in this highly contentious sphere of finance will last long without major changes. Taking into the account over-conservative character of Lao banking authorities the long-term future of crypto in this country looks bleak.

Business Notes for Startups Founders:

political climate: not friendly;
economic climate: not friendly;
regions to focus: locally;
industries to focus: e-services (tourism);
major limitations: an excessive level of government control over the business, high administrative and legal barriers to SME, low-income consumers (per-capita is around $2000), 80% of population relies on subsistence agriculture, fixed Internet penetration rate under 20%;
stimulus: expanding economy (GDP growth rate has slightly decreased from 8% in 2012 to 7% in 2017), low costs;
opportunities: to build an e-business aimed at e-service (tourism) sector of mobile Internet;
Cryptocurrencies and ICOs (outlook): legal (negative).

for more click here: https://medium.com/@svjatoslavsedov/startups-and-bitcoins-in-laos-5bf36f31a269
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November 03, 2017, 10:55:12 PM
 #3

I read on this forum every day news from all over the world, but I swear, I didn't meet any news here from my country, Serbia, her on the forum. Serbia is a poor country and we have weak economy general, so we can't be a good competitor among other countries as on world's economy stages as around digital currencies. For now our government didn't accept any decidion about crypto-currencies regulation, but I suppose we are going to be the next one who will accept rough decisions in that sense as other poor countries did.
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November 04, 2017, 01:08:27 AM
 #4

Thailand (Kingdom of Thailand)

Cryptocurrencies' legal status in Thailand is dubious. In January 2014 the Bank of Thailand declared that Bitcoin is not recognized as a legal tender. It, basically, means that Thai based Bitcoin exchanges can only trade crypto for Thai Baht and are required to operate with an e-commerce license issued by Thailand Business Development Department. At the same time, the Bank of Thailand had also stated that buying and selling of Bitcoin is illegal.

Fitting those two pieces of information together isn't easy. However, it's obvious that Thai authorities has not found it practical to persecute multiple Bitcoin exchanges still existing in Thailand. It may be treated as an unspoken message from authorities to businesses, which (message), basically, says that "whatever you do with Bitcoin you do it at your own risk".

Thailand thriving computer manufacturing and tourism industries have provided a number of market opportunities to startup founders. On the other side, Thailand economy is gradually cooling down. Furthermore, 76 Thailand provinces have drastically different level of the industrial development with most of the manufacturing facilities spread across 15 provinces while the rest are relying on proceeds from tourism sector. Those factors as well as the growing competition from neighboring states for funds and tech talents have decreased the growth potential of the local startup ecosystem.


Business Notes for Startups Founders:

political climate: not friendly;
economic climate: marginally friendly;
regions to focus: locally;
industries to focus: e-services (tourism), FinTech;
major limitations: cooling economy (GDP growth rate has fallen from 7-8% in mid-2000th to under 5% in 2017), fixed Internet penetration rate around 40%, a sharp difference in industrial development between different Thai regions, low mid-income consumers (per-capita under $7000);
stimulus: manufacturing and services constitute around 80% of GDP, developed SME sector;
opportunities: to build an e-business aimed at young users of mobile Internet in tourism and FinTech sectors;
Cryptocurrencies and ICOs (outlook): legal status is unclear (unstable).

for more read here: https://medium.com/@svjatoslavsedov/startups-and-bitcoins-in-thailand-d6b426b21297
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November 05, 2017, 12:27:33 AM
 #5

Vietnam (Socialist Republic of Vietnam)

Socialist Republic of Vietnam has an economy, where free market elements are mixed with rigid, Marxist ideology. Devastated by Indochina and Vietnam Wars (1946 - 1975), Vietnam, however, had achieved substantial economical and social progresses. Vietnam's GDP growth rate is second only to China (6-7%).

Vietnam is ruled by the Politburo and Secretariat of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV), headed by the General Secretary, who also serves as the Vietnamese President. In the unicameral, 500-members National Assembly 475 seats belong to CPV.

Country's historical division to industrial North and agricultural South had been one of the main reasons of Vietnam's slow social development in 1960-1980. In the past two decades of rapid economic growth this gap had been mostly closed. However, still there are two distinct regions in Vietnam: industrialized Hanoi, where citizens enjoy higher standards of living and Ho Chi Minh City where most of population still relies on subsistence agriculture.

Since 1990th Vietnam has made a significant progress in applying basic free-market principles to develop local small business sector, including high-tech startups. Still, Vietnamese economy is dominated by government led corporations and local tech ecosystem is built on the platform of few scientific institutions financed by the central authorities.

At the same time, low-income consumers, excessive level of government control, high bureaucratic and legal barriers, underdeveloped infrastructure and deficit of seed and VC investments have been major growth impediments to local startups. On a positive side, Vietnamese growing young generation of mobile Internet users have provided local tech entrepreneurs with business opportunities in EduTech, entertainments and e-jobs.

Vietnamese government has demonstrated conservative approach to the question of cryptocurrencies integration into country's economy. Vietnam's Central Bank prohibits the use of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in payments. At the same time, the current prime minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc hinted that the new legal framework for cryptocurrencies may be enacted in 2018. It places crypto into gray legal zone, when trading Bitcoin is still legal but government may start to persecute crypto economy agents at any time.

Business Notes for Startups Founders:

political climate: not friendly;
economic climate: marginally friendly;
regions to focus: locally;
industries to focus: e-services (tourism), EduTech, entertainments, e-jobs;
major limitations: fixed Internet penetration rate is around 50%;
stimulus: rapidly expanding economy (GDP growth rate above 7% in 2017), services constitute about 40% of GDP, large population of more than 90 million;
opportunities: to create an e-business aimed at young users of mobile Internet in such sectors as tourism, education and entertainments;
Cryptocurrencies and ICOs (outlook): marginally legal (questionably positive).

read: https://medium.com/@svjatoslavsedov/startups-and-bitcoins-in-vietnam-beca26bbdc44
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November 05, 2017, 01:59:30 AM
 #6

Something that's very interesting and scary to see is how the US/SEC will rule on how to deal with crypto.
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November 05, 2017, 09:00:46 AM
 #7

I read on this forum every day news from all over the world, but I swear, I didn't meet any news here from my country, Serbia, her on the forum. Serbia is a poor country and we have weak economy general, so we can't be a good competitor among other countries as on world's economy stages as around digital currencies. For now our government didn't accept any decidion about crypto-currencies regulation, but I suppose we are going to be the next one who will accept rough decisions in that sense as other poor countries did.

I am hoping that soon the government of Serbia would be deciding positively for Bitcoin and cryptocurrency in general as it can be helping the country. Your government should not be worrying about questions and concerns on control as the government has the power to regulate Bitcoin anyway...they just have to look at Japan as an example and disregard what China did. You country can benefit a lot from cryptocurrency.

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November 05, 2017, 09:20:27 AM
 #8

In Philippines, (my Country) Bitcoin is a very Hot Topic.
Me As A Filipino Citizen wants That Bitcoin Must Be Regulated to Respective country So That There Will be no Illegal Issues About Bitcoin.
We Are Democratic Country Which Means That Filipino People Must Have The Power On Whom we will Vote to be The Leader But The Problem is, Our Country Is Lead by Oligarchs Politicians.

But, I Think Bitcoin can Be Regulated in Philippines Only if Our President Talks to The UNITED NATIONS Leaders.

Japan and any Other Country and it's Government Has Adopted Bitcoin so I think in just a matter of Time All country and it's different economy will adopt bitcoin and Regulate it.

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November 05, 2017, 10:33:24 AM
 #9

I read on this forum every day news from all over the world, but I swear, I didn't meet any news here from my country, Serbia, her on the forum. Serbia is a poor country and we have weak economy general, so we can't be a good competitor among other countries as on world's economy stages as around digital currencies. For now our government didn't accept any decidion about crypto-currencies regulation, but I suppose we are going to be the next one who will accept rough decisions in that sense as other poor countries did.
You probably have never visited a poor country. I don't think Serbia is a poor country. I was in this country before the war, when it was still Yugoslavia. I liked it. There are some very friendly people. But your government closely cooperates with Russia. It will never give you the opportunity to become rich. Name me one rich country which has friendly relations with Russia. Perhaps your legislation regarding cryptocurrencies will change after this law will be determined by Putin. I feel sorry for you.
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November 06, 2017, 01:43:26 AM
 #10

Singapore (Republic of Singapore)

Singapore gained its independence on August 1965 not as the result of a popular uprising or a military coup but after Malaysian Parliament had voted 126-0 for the separation of Singapore. Soon after the architect of Singaporean miracle Lee Kuan Yew said: "For me, it is a moment of anguish.". In the next 50 years Singapore had been transformed from a dilapidated port-city into one of the wealthiest countries on Earth.

Formally, Singapore is a parliamentary democracy with the Prime Minister and Cabinet members appointed by the President, which is elected on a popular elections. In practice, however, Singaporean political system may be characterized as a "hybrid", which includes some elements of typical autocracies, including one-party-rule.

Unicameral, 101-members Singaporean Parliament is dominated by center-ring, liberal "People's Action Party" (PAP), which holds to 83 seats. Left-wing "Workers' Party" (WP) has 9 seats and there are, also, 9 of so-called Nominated Member of Parliament (NMP), which are appointed by the President.

Singapore economy's orientation on producing high-tech goods and services creates a fitting environment for startup founders. On the other hand, after the outbreak of 2008 financial crisis Singapore's services sector driven growth had slowed down significantly. Additionally, rising costs and increasing competition from neighboring Chinese, Malaysian and Indonesian tech hubs have had a downward pressure on the local startup ecosystem growth.

Perhaps not surprisingly, given Singaporean progressive views on economic liberties, that local authorities approach to digital currencies is to include crypto into the existing finance and tax system. In February 2014, the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS) issued tax guidelines for businesses utilizing cryptocurrencies which stated that "entities that accept virtual currencies such as Bitcoins for their revenue are subject to normal income tax rules". ICOs are also legal in Singapore.

Business Notes for Startups Founders:

political climate: friendly;
economic climate: moderately friendly;
regions to focus: locally, Southeastern Asia;
industries to focus: many (notably, FinTech);
major limitations: gradually cooling economy (GDP growth rate has fallen from around 20% in 2009 to under 5% in 2017), service sector accounts for more than 70% of GDP;
stimulus: fixed Internet penetration rate exceeds 80%, high-income consumers (per capita exceeds $55000);
opportunities: to create an e-business FinTech sector aimed at young users of mobile Internet;
Cryptocurrencies and ICOs (outlook): legal (positive).
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November 07, 2017, 04:05:41 AM
 #11

Benin (Republic of Benin)

The territory of the Kingdom of Benin (1180 - 1897) had covered the coastal territory of the present-day Nigeria. The République du Bénin (formerly French Dahomey and, later, the Republic of Dahomey) had gained its independence from France in 1960. It was re-named after the ancient kingdom in 1975. After-independence period (1960-1970th) was characterized by multiple coup d'etat.

In 1972, as a result of one of those coups, the graduate of French military school - Mathieu Kerekou - had seized power in Benin and then ruled the country for the following 34 years. Despite an obviously autocratic nature of his regime, Kerekou managed to peacefully pass his authority to democratically elected government in 2006. Today République du Bénin is the presidential state where unicameral, 83-members Assemblée nationale is comprised of 12 small political parties, constantly forming multiple alliances.

Regardless its successful transition from a dictatorship to an emerging Democracy Benin remains one of the poorest countries in the World with per capita less than $1000 and literacy rate under 30%.

Binning economy is dominated by an agricultural sector and its population's disposable income level is low. Additionally, local infrastructure (including telecommunication) is in a dare state, administrative and legal barriers to SME are too high and seed and VC capitals are almost unavailable in the country. On a positive side, large, growing young population, absence of competition and low costs of running an e-business provide local tech founders with market opportunities in the mobile space.

Cryptocurrencies are not an issue for Beninese authorities due to country's very low Internet penetration rate. Moreover, financial regulators, represented by "Banque Centrale des États de l'Afrique de l'Ouest" (BCEAO), have already demonstrated their tolerance towards crypto, when they didn't react to Senegal's decision to introduce their blockchain based national digital currency named eCFA. BCEAO plays the central bank's role for the eight west African countries - members of the West African Economic and Monetary Union (UEMOA): Benin, Burkina Faso, Guinea-Bissau, Ivory Coast, Mali, Niger, Senegal, Togo. Those countries share the West African CFA franc.

Business Notes for Startups Founders:

political climate: indifferent;
economic climate: not friendly;
regions to focus: locally;
industries to focus: e-services (mobile);
major limitations: most of population depends on subsistence agriculture, agricultural products constitutes 70% of export, underdeveloped infrastructure (fixed Internet penetration rate at 5%), bottom low-income consumers (per-capita less than $1000);
stimulus: steady economic expansion (GDP growth rate has stayed at 4-6% for several years); large population of 11 million;
opportunities: to create an e-business aimed at young users of mobile Internet;
Cryptocurrencies and ICOs (outlook): legal (positive).

also read: https://medium.com/@svjatoslavsedov/startups-and-bitcoins-in-benin-a2adc40cf768
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November 07, 2017, 12:07:56 PM
 #12

It seems to me that your predictions have no basis. The government's actions regarding cryptocurrency is irrelevant to the economic situation in the country. It seems to me that the government policy on cryptocurrency depends on the extent of democracy in the country. Your forecast did not take into account.

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November 07, 2017, 04:30:20 PM
 #13

BTC Cryptocurrencies are the global phenomenon and to forecast its future we need to consider each World country's regulations of digital currencies as well as the international implications of those policies.


Without a doubt , hands down bitcoin is a global phenomena  . After the sky rocketing price of bitcoin it has gained so much attention and publicity that it has definately come in the eyes of many governments . In my country too I hear the rumors of bitcoin being considered as illegal every other day .
I hope it does not get banned and the government understands that by some way or other bitcoin is going to strengthen the economy .
Bitcoin is literally the need of every country only if they understand its meaning and importance.                                                                                                               


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November 07, 2017, 07:24:44 PM
 #14

I read on this forum every day news from all over the world, but I swear, I didn't meet any news here from my country, Serbia, her on the forum. Serbia is a poor country and we have weak economy general, so we can't be a good competitor among other countries as on world's economy stages as around digital currencies. For now our government didn't accept any decidion about crypto-currencies regulation, but I suppose we are going to be the next one who will accept rough decisions in that sense as other poor countries did.

Most of the time only well known countries are tackled by this cryptocurrency media to show a story about what is happening in relation to Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies and we can't blame them because they do it for a living, I am so confident right now in keep doing Bitcoin things because
for as long as it is not ban then it is legal so Bitcoin will still function if some countries decide to regulate their people in using it.


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November 08, 2017, 01:59:21 AM
 #15

Sri Lanka (Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka)

Sri Lanka (old - Tambapanni) had kept its sovereignty for more than thirteen hundreds years, until, in 1815, it was conquered by British redcoats. Sri Lanka gained its independence back in 1948. Later in country's history, the rise and fall of Communist regime as well as 35-year-war between Liberation Tigers of Tamil Ealam (LTTE) and the central government had radically affected SL political system.

Sri Lanka has more than 60 registered parties. The unicameral, 225-members Parliament is dominated by "The United National Front for Good Governance" (UNFGG) with 106 seats, opposed by the left-wing "United People's Freedom Alliance" (UPFA) with 46 deputies. UNFGG is a loose alliance of conservative, nationalists parties, which supports the current Sri Lanka's President Percy Mahendra Rajapaksa, criticized by many for his authoritarian style of governance.

The export of coffee had been a cornerstone of Ceylon's economy until 1869, when it was replaced by tea. Today's Sri Lanka is one of the most prosperous countries in the Southeast Asia with tea taking 12% in SL's total export, while more than 40% is textile products. Sri Lanka's service sector (including tourism) contributes 60% to its GDP, while the agriculture - 12%.

SL's services orientated economy creates a plethora of market opportunities for local tech entrepreneurs. However, high administrative and legal barriers, underdeveloped infrastructure, lack of seed and VC financing as well as brain-drain to the neighboring states have undermined the growth potential of the local startup ecosystem.

The legal status of Bitcoin is not defined in Sri Lanka. According to short commentaries of local bureaucrats, SL Central Bank seems to be supportive of digital currencies. However, CB officials consider crypto as something to look forward to only in the future, which might take 5 to 10 years. This position could be partially explained by a relatively low Internet penetration rate in Sri Lanka, which makes most of its citizens still unaware of Bitcoin. Anyhow, selling/ buying crypto-currencies and organizing ICOs are not against the law in SL.

Business Notes for Startups Founders:

political climate: indifferent;
economic climate: marginally friendly;
regions to focus: locally;
industries to focus: e-services (tourism), e-sports, entertainments;
major limitations: slowing economy (GDP growth rate has fallen down from over 15% in 2012 to under 4% in 2017), services contribute almost 60% to GDP, CB rate at more than 7%, fixed Internet penetration rate is under 30%;
stimulus: large population of over 21 million, high low-income consumers (per-capita at about $4000);
opportunities: to create an e-business aimed at young urban users of mobile Internet in the entertainment sector;
Cryptocurrencies and ICOs (outlook): technically legal (positive).

check out for more posts like this here: https://medium.com/@svjatoslavsedov/startups-and-bitcoins-in-sri-lanka-a67c2e93178e
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November 10, 2017, 01:39:27 AM
 #16

Brunei (Nation of Brunei, Abode of Peace)

Brunei had been a sovereign state until 1888, when it was conquered by Britain. Brunei regained its independence in 1959.

Oil was discovered in Brunei in 1929, when it was literally smelled by two European travelers near Seria river. Since then oil has served as a single engine motor of Brunei's economy. Brunei Shell Petroleum (owned 50/50 by the Brunei Government and Royal Dutch/Shell) produces 170,000 barrels of 'black gold' every day. At the same time, Brunei imports most of consumers products, including food. For example, Brunei government runs one of the largest chicken farms in Australia. Its land area exceeds that of Brunei.

Brunei is the absolute monarchy with the constitutional elements. Sultan is the head of State. Brunei Government is made of four Councils: the Privy (rules on constitutional matters), Succession (if asked, determines the succession of sultans), Religious (settles religious disputes) and Ministers (day-to-day state's administration). However, the power of those councils are secondary to Sultan's. Brunei has a legal system, which is based on English common law and, at the same time, recognizes the Sharia.

Brunei is one of the richest nations in the region with highly developed infrastructure and good investment climate, which creates an appropriate environment for the development of the local startup ecosystem. However, heavy economic reliance on oil export, absence of manufacturing industries, small population, administrative barriers and deficit of qualified work-force have served as major impediments to local high-tech businesses growth. Still, an active support of Islamic finances by Brunei authorities may provide an incentive for local FinTech startup founders.

The Monetary Authority of Brunei Darussalam (AMBD) does not recognize digital currencies as a legal tender. At the same time, selling and buying crypto as well as using blockchain technology for other purposes, such as to issue smart contracts, shares (including ICOs), coupons, voting system etc., are still legal in Brunei. It's difficult to predict how long this regulatory void will last. However, given that the Brunei economy heavily relies on exported goods and services, we believe that over-regulating Internet currencies is not likely to improve the stability of Brunei Dollar (BND). Therefore we may expect the current regime to continue for a while.

Business Notes for Startups Founders:

political climate: indifferent;
economic climate: marginally friendly;
regions to focus: locally, neighboring countries;
industries to focus: e-services (tourism), FinTech (Islamic finance);
major limitations: oil-export dependent economy (90% of governments revenues), small population (under halve-a-million people);
stimulus: fixed Internet penetration rate exceeds 70%, rising tourism and Islamic finance industries mid high-income consumers (per-capita more than $30000);
opportunities: to develop an e-business company aimed at the neighboring markets of Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore in niche sectors of Islamic Finance;
Cryptocurrencies and ICOs (outlook): legal (moderately positive).
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November 10, 2017, 02:09:41 AM
 #17

Cambodia

Cambodia proclaimed its independence from the French Republic in 1953. Soon, the newly born Kingdom was forced to enter into the Vietnam war. In April 1975 Pol Pot dismissed the king and established the Khmer Rouge regime. Parliamentary elections was returned to Cambodia only in 1997.

Today's Cambodia is the constitutional monarchy with multi-party system. However, the dominance of the local communist party Kanakpak Pracheachon Kâmpuchéa (CPP) in the 123-members National Assembly is still overwhelming. CPP holds on to 68 seats, while opposition, represented by populist Cambodia National Rescue Party has 55 deputies.

After country's return to the market economy at the beginning of the 1990th Cambodia's GDP growth rate has averaged 8-9% yearly. The major local economic drivers are garment and tourism sectors. International tourists contribute more than $2 billion into country's GDP. The cheap labor in Cambodia explains the quick rise of the garment industry, which generates more than 1.5 billion dollars a year and accounts for 80% of country's export. However, agriculture (mostly rice production) employs 80% of Cambodian workforce.

Still, Cambodia economy is largely agriculture-based. This economic structure is not beneficiary for high-tech enterprises. Additionally, low-income consumers, high administrative and legal barriers, underdeveloped infrastructure as well as absence of seed and VC financing have significantly undermined the growth perspectives of local startup ecosystem. On a positive side, low costs, absence of competition and growing young population provide some niche market opportunities for Cambodian tech founders.

National Bank of Cambodia’s stance on the issue of Bitcoin is wavering. Back in the March of 2014 NBC director Chea Serey stated that NBC "will not recognize a currency that is not issued or backed by a government". She named the absence of any e-commerce law in the Kingdom as one of the main reasons. However, in April 2017 it was announced that the central bank started working on implementing a blockchain technology. It was said that blockchain "can further be customized with application development to benefit the bank’s monetary policy, including the use of the local currency." Meanwhile, the legality of buying and selling cryptocurrencies as well as organizing ICOs in Cambodia hasn't been yet questioned by regulators. Therefore, they remain technically lawful.

Business Notes for Startups Founders:

political climate: not friendly;
economic climate: not friendly;
regions to focus: locally;
industries to focus: e-services (tourism);
major limitations: dependence on agriculture, fixed Internet penetration rate around 10%, low-income consumers (per-capita below $1500), lack of VC and seed financing;
stimulus: steady economic growth (GDP growth rate stays above 7-8% for almost a decade), large population of 16 million, a growing tourism industry;
opportunities: to build an e-business aimed at the growing number of young urban users of the mobile Internet;
Cryptocurrencies and ICOs (outlook): technically legal (marginally positive).
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November 11, 2017, 03:01:50 AM
 #18

Czech Republic (Česká republika)

In November 1989 the Velvet Revolution restored the democratic governance in Czechoslovakia. 1 January 1993 Československo had ceased to exist and two new states - Czech Republic and Slovakia - had appeared on the European map. In 1990th Czech Republic had completed the successful transition from the planned, state-run economy to the free market.

After October 2017 elections, the lower house of the Czech Parliament - 200-members Parlament České republiky - contains 9 political parties the largest of which is the newly formed, populist "Action of Dissatisfied Citizens" (ANO), which holds to 78 seats. The second biggest parliamentarian party - conservative "Civic Democratic Party" (ODS) has 25 deputies. The former leading party - centrist Česká strana sociálně demokratická (ČSSD) - has now only 15 seats.

The Czech Republic used to be one of the most technologically advanced countries in the former Soviet bloc and it had kept its status after the dissolution of USSR. Today the Republic has a developed startup ecosystem, which presents multiple business opportunities to local tech founders. On the negative side, rising costs of doing business, increasing competition and brain-drain to the neighboring Central European countries have reduced the growing potentials of Czech tech enterprises.

Prior to January 2017 the Czech Republic had no had a law regulating digital currencies. However, after the Finance Ministry introduced an anti-money laundering law,, cryptocurrency exchanges are required to determine the identity of their customers. Exchange must also pay state income tax calculating revenues from transactions by using the official exchange rate of the virtual currrencies. Overall those restrictions are mild compare to most other countries. Buying and selling Bitcoin as well as organizing ICOs are both legal in the Czech Republic and there are not indications that this regime will be changed in the nearest future.

Business Notes for Startups Founders:

political climate: indifferent;
economic climate: friendly;
regions to focus: locally;
industries to focus: FinTech, media, SaaS, e-marketplace, e-services;
major limitations: brain-drain to the neighboring Central European countries, rising costs of doing business, increasing competition;
stimulus: accelerating economy (GDP growth rate has risen up from -6% in 2008 to 5% in 2017), developed industries (one of the most industrialized economy in the Eastern Europe), large population of almost 11 million, fixed Internet penetration rate about 90%, mid-income consumers (per-capita exceeds $18000), relatively low taxes, highly educated work-force;
opportunities: to create an e-business aimed at the growing number of young urban users of mobile Internet in such industries as financial technologies, media and entertainments;
Cryptocurrencies and ICOs (outlook): legal (positive).

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November 12, 2017, 09:29:51 PM
 #19

Hungary (Magyarorszag)

Hungary has the well-diversified economy, with such industries as food processing, electronics, motor vehicles, pharmaceuticals and tourism constituting the main part of country's gross product. Hungary also possesses a large agricultural sector, with agricultural lands taking more than 50% of Hungarian territory. Hungarian GDP growth rate is about 3%. At the same time, the unemployment rate, which had dropped from 11% in 2008 to 9% in 2017, still causes many young, qualified Hungarians to leave the country in a search for better life opportunities abroad.

Hungary used to be not only one of the breadbaskets of the former Socialists Block but also its leader in electronic productions. Still, it has managed to keep its leading positions in those areas in Western Europe. It creates a plethora of market opportunities for local startup founders in technological sphere. On the other side, a rising unemployment, specifically among younger generation, increasing competition from neighboring countries as well as high legal and administrative barriers have reduced local startup ecosystem growth perspectives.

Despite the Magyar Nemzeti Bank (MNB) crack down on OneCoin in May 2017 and multiple warnings it had issued, calling the digital currencies payment method "much riskier" than other electronic payment options such as credit cards, MNB stance on cryptocurrencies seems to be much less extreme than that demonstrated by other country's financial regulators. However, MNB future decisions on the matter of the digital cash may mostly depends on the European Union actions. Meanwhile, buying and selling Bitcoin as well as organizing ICOs are legal in Hungary.

Business Notes for Startups Founders:

political climate: indifferent;
economic climate: marginally friendly;
regions to focus: locally;
industries to focus: SaaS, marketplaces, e-services, e-jobs, FinTech;
major limitations: unemployment rate at about 9%, brain-drain;
stimulus: accelerating economy (GDP growth rate has risen from -8% in 2008 to 3% in 2017), one of the largest producer of electronics in EU, fixed Internet penetration rate exceeds 80%, large population of about 9 million, mid-income consumers (per-capita exceeds $13000);
opportunities: to build an e-business aimed at the growing number of young urban users of the mobile Internet in sectors of e-jobs and FinTech;
Cryptocurrencies and ICOs (outlook): legal (moderately positive).
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November 13, 2017, 11:23:08 PM
 #20

Dominica (Commonwealth of Dominica)

Economically Dominica heavily relies on offshore banking and banana export. In an attempt to diversify the local economy Dominican government actively supports coffee and citruses producers. Another growing sector on the island is an ecological tourism. On top of that, the citizenship-for-money program is enacted in Dominica.

Dominican developed finance industry and its growing tourism sector present some limited market opportunities for local tech entrepreneurs. Island's tiny population of low-income consumers, stagnating economy, high legal and administrative barriers to SME, shortage of qualified personnel and geographical isolation have significantly undermined the growth potential of the Dominican startups ecosystem.

Although the plan (named "Bit Drop") to distribute Bitcoins to all Dominican inhabitants and to convert Dominica into the first Bitcoin nation on the planet was discontinued in 2014, this small island state still remains friendly to digital cash. At the same time, the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB), which is the monetary authority for a group of eight island economies including Commonwealth of Dominica, does not recognize Internet currencies as the legal tender. Still, buying and selling cryptocurrencies as well as organizing ICOs are legal in Dominica. In a future, the official position of ECCB on cryptocurrencies is likely to be influenced by USA financial regulators.

Business Notes for Startups Founders:

political climate: indifferent;
economic climate: not friendly;
regions to focus: Caribbean;
industries to focus: FinTech (digital currencies), e-services (tourism);
major limitations: tiny population of around 70,000 inhabitants, small, stagnating economy (GDP is under $1 billion, its yearly growth rate is under 1%), high legal and administrative barriers, shortage of qualified personnel, geographical isolation;
stimulus: fixed Internet penetration rate is around 70%, low mid-income consumers (per-capita less than $7000), low competition;
opportunities: to create an e-business aimed at the growing number of mobile Internet users in FinTech and tourism sectors;
Cryptocurrencies and ICOs (outlook): legal (moderately positive).

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