Bulgaria’s deputy prime minister and minister of finance, Assen Vassilev, has proposed a move towards cryptocurrencies in the country. Vassilev, whose government came to power after a year that had three general elections, is an innovator who believes that crypto payments can be added to mainstream finances in the “short to mid-term.”
Vassilev seems to be up to date with current developments in the crypto world and has said that Bulgaria is unlikely to become a hub for crypto miners, citing the exodus of Kazakhstan miners who saw themselves trapped in a country seized by civil unrest. Instead, Vassilev now seeks to find a way for Bulgarians who have adopted crypto to make use of their holdings.
Bulgaria currently has one of the best tax rates for crypto. Assuming you declare your crypto to the government and liquidate it in FIAT, you only need to pay a 10% personal income tax and you are free to do with your currency as you please.
Bulgaria is also believed to be one of the biggest holders of cryptocurrency – the second-largest in fact. The country managed to seize and has been reportedly holding on to 213,519 Bitcoin (BTC). The currency was claimed by a criminal group back in 2017. At the time, BTC cost around $3.5bn, but today, its value is more than $8bn, despite the recent crypto crash, as prices continue to fall.
Essentially, Bulgaria owns more BTC than crypto-friendly El Salvador which shifted towards a crypto economy in September 2021 and so far, has accumulated around 1,800 BTC. However, the country has been particularly slow to respond to clamping down on domestic fraudsters who have been resurfacing according to reports by investigative journalists shared on social media.
The country’s most notorious crypto scam was conducted by Ruja Ignatova, dubbed the ‘queen of crypto', who persuaded people worldwide to invest heavily into her venture, OneCoin. Then she disappeared.
For Vassilev to implement crypto into the day-to-day lives of Bulgarians, who are still the poorest in the European Union according to Eurostat data, the minister would need to create clear-cut rules that protect consumers.
In the meantime, as Bulgaria is figuring out its crypto payments, you can take your BTC and try your luck at Bitcasino, 1xBit or FortuneJack.