Cyprus Partners with VeChain Foundation and CREAM to Advance Blockchain

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Blockchain Nicosia Republic of Cyprus Wikimedia
Image: Faneromeni Square treia fanaria bakery, Nicosia, Republic of Cyprus, Wikimedia

Invest Cyprus, the government’s dedicated partner responsible for attracting and facilitating foreign direct investment in key economic sectors, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with blockchain startups VeChain Foundation and CREAM to collaborate on the development and implementation of blockchain solutions.

VeChain Foundation and CREAM will establish a joint entity in Cyprus and advise Invest Cyprus on numerous topics including policy reform that will enable blockchain as an underlying infrastructure for operations and financial services.

The three organizations will work together on several nationwide investment strategies involving the advancement blockchain and explore the merits of blockchain technology in varied industries including financial services, investments, economic reform, as well as many other societal aspects.

The move is part of a broader plan by the Cyprus government to develop “a new era of blockchain technology,” according to a release.

“Invest Cyprus, as a promoter of Cyprus investment opportunities and advisor to the government of Cyprus in the investments space, sees [blockchain] as both transformational and fiscally restorative at the infrastructure level,” said Michalis P. Michael, chairman of Invest Cyprus.

“We are investing in the development of the fintech, blockchain sector and we plan to be at the forefront so that we can facilitate investments and economic development in Cyprus and the region.”

The initial scope of the collaboration will focus on the “blockchainization” of several areas. Jackson Fu, co-founder and managing partner of CREAM, a US-based blockchain advisory and investment firm, said his company will assist the country in attracting projects and talents from around the world. “In turn, we will help blockchain related projects to find a home where they will be supported and protected by the law or create, develop and thrive,” Fu added.

Cyprus has been working towards becoming a leading blockchain and fintech hub. In July, Cyprus’ Security and Exchange Commission (CySEC) established the Innovation Hub that focuses on blockchain. Firms who pass the application process gain access to specialized expertise and industry roundtables while maintaining the ability to communicate with CySEC as they work on issues related to blockchain innovation.

Meanwhile, the University of Nicosia, the largest in the country, has been allowing students to pay tuition and other school fees with cryptocurrencies since 2013, and the Cyprus International Institute of Management regularly hosts lectures and seminars on blockchain-based topics.