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Communities in two countries sharing borders, history and perspectives have expressed similar views on the future of the crypto-currency sector. A new association in Croatia hopes to lay the foundations for self-regulation in the industry. In neighbouring Slovenia, entrepreneurs and government officials have promised to work together to educate the public about the benefits of blockchain technology.

Croatian crypto companies advise regulatory authorities

Companies and enthusiasts in Croatia have joined forces to help government agencies make informed decisions about the crypto currency sector. A new umbrella organisation will bring suggestions and important issues to the attention of policy makers in Zagreb, Bitfalls reported this week. The Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Association will advise regulators on everything from buying and selling crypto currencies to crypto payments and payouts in Bitcoin.

UBIK [“Udruga za Blockchain i Kriptovalute”] intends to “create a focused and strong community of people dealing with blockchain technology and the domain of crypto currency in Croatia”, but also in the region. Providing relevant information, education and knowledge about cryptoeconomics is a priority. The Croatian Crypto Association plans to provide legal, financial and technological support to authorities and their members in developing the regulatory framework and implementing strategic block-chain projects.

Interest in Bitcoin, other crypto currencies and the underlying technology has increased significantly in Croatia over the past year as prices on crypto markets have exploded. The local community has grown with new companies working with blockchain technologies and more companies accepting crypto payments.

The Croatian authorities have yet to adopt a comprehensive regulatory policy. During a discussion on digital currencies in 2013, the Croatian National Bank allegedly declared that Bitcoin was not illegal in the country. More recently, in 2017, HNB found that cryptos are neither legal means of payment nor electronic money under Croatian law. The country has called for joint EU decisions on crypto currencies.

Government and businesses want Slovenians to know about blockchain

Further positive signals came this month from Croatia’s neighbour Slovenia, another former Yugoslav Republic and current EU membership. Government officials and blockchain companies promised to work together to “educate the public about the benefits and opportunities of innovative technology”. They met to establish an open dialogue between public authorities and entrepreneurs, necessary to clarify and address the challenges. Slovenian Prime Minister Miro Cerar also attended the meeting organised by Viberate, a start-up company developing a decentralised marketplace for live music.

We called for a scheme that would support blockchain projects with existing financial constraints and allow us to simplify recruitment procedures. The government has agreed that in due course it will offer us more favorable terms,” said Insurepal, one of the participating companies, in a blog posting. He expressed the hope that similar public discussions will help make Slovenia one of the most advanced countries in the blockchain sector.

The companies attending the meeting also announced the creation of the Blockchain Alliance CEE. It will focus its efforts on improving the visibility and enhancing the image of the sector through unified communication.

The current government in Ljubljana has a positive attitude towards the crypto industry. At last year’s “Digital Slovenia 2020” conference, Prime Minister Cerar acknowledged the progress made by local businesses and said that his country could play a leading role in the development of blockchain in the European Union. Slovenia is also among the countries that do not tax private individuals on capital gains from Bitcoin and other crypto currencies.

Do you believe that positive developments in South Eastern Europe regarding crypto regulation will influence decisions in the EU? Please share your thoughts in the comment field below. Wow why suddenly again so many positive messages from different states whereby cryptos a few weeks ago was still the devil from hell? Price manipulation? Well probably nobody will know exactly but of course there is so much positive news to hear.