The Legislative Landscape for Cryptocurrencies in Trinidad and Tobago Prior to 2024


Trinidad and Tobago’s approach to cryptocurrency legislation and regulation prior to 2024 was characterized by caution and a lack of specific regulatory frameworks. The nation was relatively behind other Caribbean countries in implementing digital currency solutions, including the consideration of a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC).

Regulatory Stance and Developments

Lack of Specific Regulation: As of 2021, cryptocurrencies were neither regulated nor supervised by the government of Trinidad and Tobago. This absence of regulation meant there were no consumer protection laws specifically designed to protect users against losses from cryptocurrency transactions​​.

Cryptocurrency as a Security: Under the Securities Act of 2012, a cryptocurrency could be considered a security if it met certain criteria, such as representing ownership or interest in the capital, debt, property, profits, earnings, or royalties of any person. If a cryptocurrency affected the securities market similar to traditional securities, it could also be subject to securities and anti-money laundering laws and regulations​​.

Regulatory Tools Development: The Trinidad and Tobago Securities and Exchange Commission (TTSEC), Central Bank, and Financial Intelligence Unit were developing tools like a Regulatory Innovation Hub and a Regulatory Sandbox. These tools were intended to assess the risks, characteristics, and functions of various cryptocurrencies and assist in the potential future regulation of such financial technology products and services​​.

Role of New Organizations: Organizations like the FinTech Association of Trinidad and Tobago and the Trinidad and Tobago Financial Centre (TTIFC) were instrumental in encouraging the growth of the financial services sector, including areas related to digital finance and cryptocurrencies​​.

CBDC Research: The Central Bank of Trinidad and Tobago included the examination of a CBDC and its implications for payment system efficiency in its strategic plan. In 2021, the bank was conducting research on the feasibility of creating and implementing its own CBDC, although no timeline was set for this initiative​​.


As of the end of 2022, Trinidad and Tobago’s legislative landscape for cryptocurrencies was marked by a lack of specific regulatory frameworks and an exploratory approach towards potential future regulations. The government and regulatory authorities were cautiously assessing the role and impact of cryptocurrencies within the financial sector, while new organizations were fostering growth in this area. The consideration of a CBDC indicated an interest in digital currency solutions, aligning with global trends in financial technology.

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