The Government of Bermuda has announced their partnership with stablecoin platform, Stablehouse. Together they hope to roll out a pilot program for a digital “stimulus” token, targeting both residents and merchants within the islands.
According to The Royal Gazette, the idea of launching such a program was accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic. As part of the program, the government plans to enable the purchase of food and other products from retailers to strengthen its now-necessary array of contactless payment solutions.
The Bermuda government will also distribute payments to those who qualify for coronavirus-related financial aid using the tokens.
All the transactions will be handled through a digital wallet managed from a mobile app. Assets in this app will be spendable at vendors through QR codes and point-of-sale devices.
Philippe Bekhazi, chief executive officer of Stable house, commented on the pilot:
“What we are proposing is bypassing all the middle-men, bypassing the banks, and airdrop what is basically an IOU from the government to the people. You will go to a website and register your ID, and the Government will airdrop to you a certain amount of money. It will be immediate and you will have it on your phone wallet."
The Premier of Bermuda, Edward David Burt, told local media outlets that the island is keen to establish itself “as a leader in supporting innovative private-sector digital asset solutions.”
Recently, Bermuda became the first government to accept the USDC stablecoin for tax payments, according to global financial services company, Circle.
In late 2019, Burt stated that cryptocurrencies are a great equalizer and characterized fintech innovation as “a national strategic imperative.”