The Spanish city of Torrevieja is starting to accept cryptocurrency payments.

In a groundbreaking move, the city administration of Torreviejo in the Spanish province of Alicante has given approval for local businesses to accept cryptocurrencies as payment. With a population of 82,000 and being a popular tourist destination, this decision is expected to make Torreviejo one of the leading crypto hubs in Europe. The Department of Trade of the City Hall and the Association of Small and Medium Enterprises of Torrevieja successfully negotiated an agreement, aiming to leverage blockchain technology to boost job creation and attract investment in the technology sector.

The city councilor, Rosario Martínez Chazarra, believes that allowing residents and visitors to use cryptocurrencies for transactions will not only cater to the growing demand for digital currencies but also draw more crypto investors to the city. To support local businesses in adapting to this new payment method, the University of Alicante has committed to offering specialized courses on digital payments.

It is worth noting that the acceptance of cryptocurrency payments in Spain has lagged behind, despite the legality of cryptocurrencies as a means of payment since 2015. However, this development in Torreviejo signals a shift towards embracing digital assets and incorporating them into the mainstream economy.

The Spanish government has also been taking steps to regulate the cryptocurrency market. The Spanish Tax Service recently mandated the declaration of crypto assets by March 31, 2024, reinforcing the need for transparency and compliance. Additionally, there has been a push for accelerated implementation of the EU Cryptocurrency Act (MiCA) in Spain, highlighting the country’s commitment to fostering a secure and regulated crypto ecosystem.