Cryptocurrencies: Legal, accepted as payment in some contexts
In Switzerland cryptocurrencies and exchanges are legal, and the country has adopted a remarkably progressive stance towards cryptocurrency regulations. The Swiss Federal Tax Administration (SFTA) considers cryptocurrencies to be assets: they are subject to the Swiss wealth tax and must be declared on annual tax returns.
Switzerland imposes a registration process on cryptocurrency exchanges – which must obtain a license from the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) in order to operate. Cryptocurrency regulations in Switzerland are also in place for ICOs: in February 2018, FINMA published a set of guidelines which applied existing financial legislation to offerings across a range of areas – from banking to securities trading and collective investment schemes (depending on structure).
Moving forward, Switzerland’s government has indicated that it will continue to work towards a regulatory environment which is friendly to cryptocurrencies. In 2016, the town of Zug, a prominent global cryptocurrency hub, introduced Bitcoin as a way of paying city fees. In January 2018, Swiss Economics Minister Johann Schneider-Ammann stated that he was aiming to make Switzerland “the crypto-nation”. Meanwhile, the Swiss Secretary for International Finance, Jörg Gasser, has emphasized the need to promote cryptocurrencies without compromising existing financial standards.