Tech billionaire Tim Draper, an avowed bitcoin bull, says Switzerland is losing its status as a cryptocurrency haven amid escalating regulatory crackdowns on initial coin offerings (ICOs).
Draper, who set a $250,000 bitcoin price target for 2022, made the remarks at the Crypto ICO Summit in Zurich.
“You [Switzerland] had the tiger by the tail, everyone was going to do their ICOs through you, and all you had to do was make it easier for everybody,” Draper admonished (via SwissInfo). “Instead, the regulatory bodies got in there. They made it tougher. They put more and more barriers up so people went to Singapore and Gibraltar and Cayman and to other places.”
Draper added that Switzerland flubbed a huge opportunity to become a cryptocurrency and ICO hub by caving into government regulators.
“Switzerland had an enormous opportunity and I think they have lost their opportunity. If you have heavy regulation, you lose your business. Maybe they can bring it back by being more regulatory light. Governments now have to compete for us. We can move, we can go from country to country.”
In February 2018, the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) unveiled guidelines on ICOs, where it said it will treat ICOs on a case-by-case basis, reiterated its confidence in the innovative potential of blockchain technology, and vowed to crack down on money-laundering and cryptocurrency scams.