UK taxpayers should have the option of paying taxes using cryptocurrency, according to a Conservative MP.
The US state of Ohio opened the way for corporate companies to pay taxes with Bitcoin earlier this month – and Walsall North MP Eddie Hughes believes the UK should follow suit.
Describing himself as a “crypto enthusiast with amateur knowledge”, Hughes wants his fellow members of Parliament to explore the possibilities of digital currencies and the blockchain technology which underpins them.
“You’re either ahead of the curve, or you’re behind the curve, and our country is in an interesting position right now – we need to be seen as a progressive country,” he said.
“We are at a crossroads, and we’re about to determine our future – one in which taking the lead in this field could prove very beneficial.
“It feels like it gets talked about a lot, wherever you go in the UK – and as MPs, we have a duty to understand it.”
Hughes, who campaigned for the UK to leave the European Union, hopes that one day citizens will be able to make crypto payments to local authorities and utility providers.
“Only recently I met with the RNLI (Royal National Lifeboat Institution) which is now accepting charitable donations through cryptocurrency – if we can do that, what’s to stop us being able to pay council tax and other bills with Bitcoin?” he said.
In July Hughes released a report entitled ‘Unlocking blockchain’ with libertarian Conservative think tank Freer UK.
Within the report he suggested that the UK government should appoint a chief blockchain officer.