A number of cryptocurrency billionaires are relocating to the island of Puerto Rico in the Caribbean, with the ambition of creating an area run solely on blockchain technology.
The goal has come as a direct result of the recent devestation caused by Hurricane Maria, with many believing that, if they must rebuild, why not rebuild differently?
“It’s only when everything’s been swept away that you can make a case for rebuilding from the ground up,” Stephen Morris told The New York Times.
These wealthy residents – dubbed ‘Puertopians’ – are buying property in Old San Juan in order to make this dream a reality. Members of this elite group include Matt Clemenson, co-founder of blockchain lottery website Lottery.com, and Brock Pierce, Block.One co-founder.
“We’re benevolent capitalists, building a benevolent economy,” said Clemenson. “Puerto Rico has been this hidden gem, this enchanted island that’s been consistently overlooked and mistreated. Maybe 500 years later we can make it right.”
Of course it doesn’t hurt that the country has no federal personal income tax or capital gains tax alongside low business tax rates, making it a no-brainer for many wishing to operate outside of the US without giving up citizenship.
CNET and Videocoin founder Halsey Minor added: “The US doesn’t want us. It’s trying to choke off this economy. There needs to be a place where people are free to invent.”