State bank in Switzerland to launch crypto-currency services

Basler Kantonalbank, or BKB, a government-owned commercial bank in Switzerland, plans to launch crypto-currency services through its banking subsidiary.

According to an August 3 report by the local news agency Finews, BKB’s subsidiary and a national banking group, Bank Cler, are working on services that will allow customers to trade and store cryptomoney. BKB holds a majority interest in Cler, although the subsidiary has its own banking license separate from BKB.

Switzerland’s Crypto Valley seeks government assistance

Access to financial products
A BKB spokesman confirmed the news to Cointelegraph. They also said that the bank plans to launch these products in response to increased demand for cryptomoney services in the country.

The BKB representative said:

„At the BKB Group, we are working to offer our customers a solution for trading and depositing selected cryptomonies. As an established regional banking group (Basler Kantonalbank) and, in fact, with the national bank (Bank Cler), we want to provide our customers with secure access to these new financial products.

Switzerland will not change its tax law with regard to blockchain in the near future
The spokesperson did not specify what types of crypto currencies will be available through BKB. Development is currently at an early stage and there is no tentative date for launch yet.

Leading the way
These plans make Basler Kantonalbank the first government-backed bank in Switzerland to enter the crypt coin industry. „This issue is being driven within the BKB Group by Bank Cler’s digital competence center,“ a BKB spokesman on the issue said.

Swiss Bank Maerki Baumann becomes second in the country to accept assets in cryptomoney

Home to the infamous „Crypto Valley“, Switzerland is known as one of the world’s most cryptomone-friendly jurisdictions. In August 2018, the Swiss bank SIX Exchange, Hypothekarbank Lenzburg, became the first Swiss bank to provide corporate accounts for blockchain and cryptomoney financial technology companies. Maerki Baumann, an unlisted family bank in Switzerland, reportedly became the second bank to accept crypto-currency in August 2018.

Julius Baer, one of Switzerland’s top five banks, saw its net profit rise by more than 30 per cent after including Bitcoin Investor and other crypts in the first half of 2020, as reported on July 20.