Honduras’ Santa Lucia Launches ‘Bitcoin Valley’ Merchant Center

Honduras has launched a ‘Bitcoin Valley’ in the tourist city of Santa Lucia. The goal is to encourage tourism, with 60 businesses initially offering a paid facility.

Honduras is the newest country where a city accepts cryptocurrency as a form of payment, as the tourist town of Santa Lucia now houses the “Bitcoin Valley”. Businesses can accept cryptocurrencies for payment in the city, which is a short drive from the capital of Tegucigalpa.

The launch is a bid to attract more tourism. Other countries, including El Salvador, have benefited from becoming more crypto-friendly, attracting tourists and entrepreneurs alike. Initially, 60 businesses will be able to accept cryptocurrencies, and they will be trained to do so before expanding to other regions and businesses.

The Honduras-based Blockchain Honduras Organization, Guatemalan cryptocurrency exchange CoinCax, the Technological University of Honduras and the Municipality of Santa Lucia have jointly collaborated in this effort. Leonardo Paguada, the founder of the Blockchain Honduras organization, also said that merchants will be able to receive instant payments in the local currency.

However, this is not the first time Honduras has dealt with crypto. The country appears to be heating up to crypto like many others in the region.

Honduras and Other Central American Countries Eyeing Crypto

Countries on the Central American continent are testing crypto initiatives to better weigh the risks and benefits. The Honduras Economic Zone recognized bitcoin as legal tender in April 2022 and allowed taxes to be paid in BTC. It has also allowed entities to issue bitcoin bonds.

Of course, El Salvador is most gung-ho about crypto, with the government recognizing bitcoin as legal tender nationally. This has resulted in repeated warnings from global organizations, who worry that it could jeopardize financial stability and facilitate illegal activity.

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Closely observed experiments by global organizations

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) have both issued statements regarding the risks of cryptocurrencies. The latter said that the crypto fears have come true, pointing to the recent market crash and the collapse of TeraUSD.

The IMF has expressed concerns over the adoption of bitcoin as legal tender for El Salvador and the Central African Republic. It has also been said that DeFi poses risks to the financial markets and requires regulation.

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