This expat hotspot on the Costa Blanca wants to become Spain’s first ‘crypto-friendly’ city – but what does that involve?

TORREVIEJA has unveiled plans to become Spain’s first cryptocurrency-friendly city.

The Costa Blanca resort hopes to achieve that goal through an initiative launched by the local merchants association, Apymeco.

The plan’s first phase will promote commerce through cryptocurrency as a transactional tool, aiming to allow retailers to collect payments for goods and services using crypto.

The second phase will focus on sustainability- seeking to generate a positive effect on the environment and to improve the quality of Torrevieja’s green spaces.

The final phase will try to woo tech companies to locate their businesses in Torrevieja by offering financing to create more IT-related jobs in the city.

Apymeco president, Jorge Almarcha, said: “It’s been legal to pay with cryptocurrencies in Spain since 2015, but its not been until now that we wanted to further their use as a payment across local commerce.”

APYMECO’S ALMARCHA

Torrevieja council will help with the initiative including arranging courses from the University of Alicante for businesses on how to use cryptocurrency.

The city’s commerce councillor, Rosario Martínez Chazarra, expressed her hope that the measures will boost cryptocurrency owners.

Apymeco has already started to sign up retailers and will create a joint cryptocurrency payment system to be used by participants.

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Alex Trelinski

Alex worked for 30 years for the BBC as a presenter, producer and manager. He covered a variety of areas specialising in sport, news and politics. After moving to the Costa Blanca over a decade ago, he edited a newspaper for 5 years and worked on local radio.

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