News Release: HAMILTON, Bermuda – Charting the future course of digital assets, the Bermuda Government’s Economic Development Department (EDD) led a roundtable discussion on June 27th that brought together industry stakeholders and DABA-licensed companies. This strategic dialogue marks a critical step in the ongoing evolution of Bermuda’s FinTech ecosystem, reinforcing the island’s position as a leader in digital asset regulation.

These insightful discussions explored Bermuda’s leading role in the blockchain industry and suggested potential improvements for expanding digital asset services within the local economy. Some solutions included the development of an interoperable wallet with Bermuda-dollar-denominated stablecoins, a push for broader merchant acceptance of digital assets, and updating regulations to allow for international passporting of licensed companies to other key, reputable jurisdictions. Additionally, the event highlighted the critical role of education in enhancing local understanding and adoption of new innovative technologies.

“Bermuda’s FinTech ecosystem is more than just a technological evolution; it’s a cornerstone of our comprehensive youth and workforce development strategies. We’re paving the way for Bermuda’s youth to participate in the digital revolution by providing them with the training and skills to build a strong foundation for now and for the future.” said The Hon. Jason Hayward, JP, MP, the Minister of Economy and Labour.

The conversation compared Bermuda’s Digital Asset Business Act (DABA) with regulatory frameworks in other regions that have also taken a proactive approach to regulating the sector, such as the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM). Participants discussed insights on preparing for emerging digital asset trends, including the evolution of Decentralized Finance (DeFi) and Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs).

“The Economic Development Department was thrilled to welcome and engage with industry leaders during this roundtable discussion. We are committed to enabling a vibrant FinTech ecosystem in Bermuda, which is not only transformative but integral to the future of our economy. This roundtable provided valuable insights and reaffirmed our mission to create an environment where our young talents can drive innovation, shaping a resilient and prosperous future for Bermuda,” stated Raymond Jones, Director of the EDD.

A significant part of the dialogue centred on the increasing importance of digital identity, its intersection with digital assets, and the rapidly evolving artificial intelligence (AI) industry. Participants argued about the need for regulation addressing the use of digital identity in transactions. They stressed its importance for enhancing personal data protection, simplifying customer onboarding, and streamlining the transfer of value within the Bermudian economy.

The discussion also examined the intersection of digital assets with other industries, including insurance, open banking, the Internet of Things, and renewable energy.

Penrose Partners, a leading Bermudian blockchain consultancy and FinTech advisor to the EDD played a key role in facilitating these discussions. “This week’s roundtable has been an extraordinary platform for open discussions and insights, and the Penrose team is honored to have been a part of it. We’re committed to ensuring that all Bermudians can benefit from the evolving FinTech industry and to continue supporting new international business channels that can be opened for Bermuda’s economic growth,” said Sean Stapley, Partner at Penrose Partners.

This roundtable marks the first of a series of events that will continue enabling Bermuda’s journey towards a digital future. Following the roundtable’s insights and collaborative discussions, it is anticipated that the roundtable will meet again during the upcoming Bermuda Tech Summit, which will be held from October 9th to 10th, 2023.

By identifying challenges and exploring potential industry solutions alongside participants from the Bermuda Monetary Authority and relevant government agencies, Bermuda continues demonstrating its commitment to creating a robust and forward-thinking FinTech ecosystem.