Brazilian city Rio de Janeiro plans to invest a small percentage of its treasury reserves in Bitcoin.

Key Takeaways

  • Rio de Janeiro intends to invest 1% of its treasury reserves in Bitcoin, Mayor Eduardo Paes revealed Thursday.
  • The city also plans to introduce additional discounts for property taxes paid in Bitcoin.
  • Today, Rio is expected to publish a decree establishing a working group that would handle the issues concerning the Bitcoin investments.

At the Rio Innovation Week, Mayor Eduardo Paes spoke on how he wants to transform Rio de Janeiro into a cryptocurrency hub. This plan is set to include holding small amounts of treasury reserves in Bitcoin.

First Brazilian City to Hold Crypto in Treasury

Rio de Janeiro is expected to become the first Brazilian city to hold Bitcoin reserves.

Speaking at the Rio Innovation Week conference on Thursday, Mayor Eduardo Paes announced that Rio de Janeiro plans to invest 1% of its treasury reserves in Bitcoin; Brazilian publication O Globo broke the nesws the same day.

The mayor spoke on a panel alongside his American colleague Miami Mayor Francis Suarez. He said, “We are going to launch Crypto Rio and invest 1% of the treasury in cryptocurrency.” 

Mayor Suarez announced a similar move for the city of Miami last year. In a January FOX Business interview, he said, “We are looking at the possibility of diversifying our investment portfolio and having and holding a percentage of our investments in Bitcoin.” Miami never proceeded with that plan but instead launched its own coin—dubbed MiamiCoin—in August last year.

Following in Miami’s footsteps, Rio now wants to become the next technological and cryptocurrency hub in South America. Speaking of this at the conference, Mayor Paes said:

“Rio de Janeiro has everything it takes to become the tech capital of South America. Events like the Rio Innovation Week come to strengthen the city’s image as the perfect place to work, live, and innovate.”

According to Rio’s Finance Secretary Pedro Paulo and Secretary of Economic Development, Innovation, and Simplification, Chicão Bulhões, the city’s administration has also considered offering additional discounts for tax payments paid in Bitcoin. Today, residents of Rio already enjoy a 7% discount on property taxes, but according to the new rules, that discount could be as much as 10% if paid with Bitcoin. According to the representatives, the goal of the tax incentive is to entice crypto companies from the region to migrate to Rio.

Rio de Janeiro is expected to publish a decree later today establishing a working group that would handle all of the issues surrounding the city’s intended Bitcoin purchases.

Disclosure: At the time of writing, the author of this piece owned ETH and several other cryptocurrencies.

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