In 2017, Hurricane Maria destroyed the infrastructure of the island of Puerto Rico, including the power grid and communication lines. The region will need a long time to recover. Assistance has already been...
In 2017, Hurricane Maria destroyed the infrastructure of the island of Puerto Rico, including the power grid and communication lines. The region will need a long time to recover. Assistance has already been offered by large technology companies: Tesla will provide the island with renewable energy and Google has deployed a network of balloons, “Loon”, which provides mobile communications and the internet.
Cryptocurrency magnates' attention was drawn to the destroyed region. They were looking for a place to create a city of the future with infrastructure based on blockchain and other advanced technologies.
In addition to the tempting idea of building a new crypto-region there, Puerto Rico also offers considerable tax freedom. Citizens of the United States who are crypto-entrepreneurs and who reside there will receive tax incentives for commercial activities, as well as be able to not pay income tax and capital gains tax.
Among those inspired by the new idea of “Puertoopia" is Brock Pearce, the 37-year-old head of the Bitcoin Foundation. Pierce says that he and his supporters are motivated not only by the desire to evade taxes, but also by compassion for the inhabitants of Puerto Rico. Crypto-currency billionaires want to build an honest and transparent financial system that will not depend on the U.S. government. New technologies will reveal the investment potential of the region, which until now has remained unnoticed.
So far, the team has settled in the historic center of the capital Old San Juan, in the hotel Monastery, which was not destroyed by the hurricane. Crypto-investors are looking for real estate for the first stage of building their infrastructure project.
So far, it is not clear whether investors are going to build a whole city or convert Old San Juan into a new crypto-region. The local government is probably close to allowing the creation of the first crypto-currency bank. Also, investors are planning to build their own seaport and airport.
Local residents are unsure about the plans. Some of them are afraid that business people who wish to avoid taxes from their crypto investments will flow to the island. Puerto Rico will become an experimental platform for billionaires and it is not clear whether local residents will benefit from this.
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