Not another country, not a state in the US, but a Swiss city. Lugano is adopting Bitcoin and Tether as a form of legal, local trade. It is also launching its own blockchain product for the same purpose.
Several months of preparation
Lugano’s plans for a local financial revolution were announced at an event called Lugano’s Plan B. It was attended by the city government, as well as the CTO of the Tether project Paolo Ardoino.
The groundbreaking decision for the city’s residents was not made immediately. Preparations to adopt Bitcoin (BTC) and Tether (USDT) took 18 months. In late 2020, the first works for this purpose started. They relied on their own blockchain and cryptocurrency payment system. To make it work in turn, a local token called LVGA was created back in 2018.
Meanwhile, the city has now invested in Tether and declared it alongside Bitcoin as a legal tender. This aims to attract many companies and institutions to want to settle in Lugano. They will be able to benefit from an incentive plan funded by the Tether team. They are talking about 100 million dollars for companies whose offices and staff they decide to relocate to the Alpine city. Tether also intends to create a large startup center in Lugano, so that in the future it will host companies from all over the world and become the next crypto powerhouse.
Payments made within USDT are to be supported through the Polygon network. Its low transaction fees, and high scalability should easily meet local challenges.
LVGA’s significant impact
A big influence on the adoption of Tether and Bitcoin has been the LVGA point token. It is not without reason that it is the third form of crypto-payment that is officially in place in Lugano as of now. Thanks to the activities of the city government, two hundred local businesses already have the infrastructure to handle crypto transactions. LVGA is behind this. Pilot programs implemented based on it have resulted in the city’s systems already allowing five thousand residents to make payments to said companies.
Tether along with Bitfinex have also started a partnership with three universities in Lugano. Thanks to it, 500 students are eligible to receive academic scholarships, in courses dedicated to blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies.