Every Israeli knows their next vacation in Israel’s southernmost city, Eilat, will probably include buying some products simply because it’s cheaper to buy there than anywhere else in the country.
As a free-trade zone, Eilat enables businesses to import, store, handle, manufacture, reconfigure, and re-export goods under specific customs regulations. These include a lack of a customs duty, bringing down the end-price for consumers.
Eilat is only one example of how countries designate certain areas or cities to ease the process of doing business, creating new jobs, and attracting foreign investors. While free-trade zones have their advantages, they are only one type of an entity called a Special Economic Zone (SEZ). One company is taking that idea and fusing it with blockchain, the technology behind Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, to offer a system of economic incentives that would have otherwise never been possible.
Oz Finance, which recently attended the 2022 Israel Crypto Conference (ICC) in Tel Aviv, is making use of the Philippines’ law establishing the Freeport Area of Bataan, the nation’s first crypto-based SEZ. It leverages the SEZ to offer real-world blockchain applications while staying compliant with governmental rules and regulations.
Investors may buy Oz Finance’s cryptocurrency, named TOTOZ tokens, to be eligible to apply for either residency or business operations in one of the partner ecozones, simply by staking a set value of their tokens. This enables users to join a real business-oriented community with near zero-tax living and clear regulations for digital assets and decentralized finance (DeFi) services and obtain residency status anywhere within the host country.
According to the United Nations, there are nearly 5,400 SEZs in the world today, out of which over 1,000 were established in the last five years, with China being the most successful in using SEZs to attract foreign capital.
An SEZ is an area in which the business and trade laws are different from the rest of the country through business-friendly regulations, incentives for investors and manufacturers, and the promotion of importing and exporting goods.
By fusing cryptocurrency with SEZs, Oz leverages its community-building capabilities to raise capital and investments, turning the world’s ecozones into a multi-trillion-dollar digital asset ecosystem. Oz provides a blueprint for ecozones to harness blockchain technology and its associated benefits to fuel economic growth.
With over 10 more projects on the horizon, Oz’s roadmap is packed with exciting new projects.
Some of the upcoming releases include the launch of the Oz Blockchain Protocol, a bonding curve to accelerate community growth, and DeFi services to provide capital and credit to its members, integrating physical assets, NFTs, and Metaverse applications into its ecosystem.
With an estimated 200,000 active investors in cryptocurrency and other digital assets in Israel, it would not come as a surprise if OZ’s project happens to make its way to the Jewish state.
Perhaps with the growing popularity of crypto, implementing Oz Living in the Negev could be leveraged as another step forward in realizing David Ben-Gurion’s dream of “populating the wilderness and bringing it to flourish.”