We must take a step forward to be an educational reference in the field of new technologies, said Pau Augé, COO of Augé Holding Group

From February 23rd to February 26th, Andorra hosted the 2023 Art & Innovation Summit. This event helped to connect professionals from classic business sectors with disruptors, banks, and public institutions closer to blockchain technology. Following this event, we spoke with one of the speakers of the Summit, Pau Augé, COO of Augé Holding Group (the Andorran company sponsoring the event). Pau is also tax/corporate lawyer specialized in new business models and blockchain.

“Andorra needs events like the Art & Innovation Summit, as they exemplify the commitment to diversifying our economy, positioning Andorra at the technological and regulatory forefront, and becoming a point of attraction for international investors and entrepreneurs.

Art & Innovation

The Summit was based in two main verticals. The first one – innovation, was transmitted through the presentations given by professionals specialized in finance, lawyers who are knowledgeable in the field of new technologies, entrepreneurs who develop business models based on blockchain technology, public institutions that are following a regulation strategy of the sector, as well as international and national companies that sponsored the event and have positioned themselves as change agents who can promote, accompany, and invest efforts or money in new business models.

The second vertical – art, was promoted through the magnificent artworks of the famous sculptor Lorenzo Queen, who exhibited through NFTs that anyone visiting the summit could purchase. The event also had exceptional collaborations, such as AutoBello, which brought an exhibition of luxury cars to the Principality of Andorra as a more “playful” part of the summit.

Personally, the most interesting participants were Alejandro Salomundo and Delox.

Blockchain technology as the basis of new technologies

The blockchain business is becoming more and more popular today. Blockchain technology allows any transaction, agreement, or act to be recorded in an immutable, traceable, and public manner. Therefore, this technology is based on the pillars of trust and consensus. That is why more and more business models linked to this new technology appear and open the door for greater guarantees, security, and confidence in consumer operations – from Cripto Exhanges, to Tokenization of physical assets or, for example, Smart Contracts that are executed by themselves (autonomous software) without intervention of the parties.

However, the need for regulation as a result of knowing the details of each business model based on this technology is beginning to diminish decentralization (a fundamental pillar of Blockchain) but, nevertheless, it is providing legal certainty to market players.

Andorra: goals and objectives

The new law that develops digital assets (Law 24/2022) gives us a greater visibility as a nation that is betting on new technologies. However, Andorra must promote its State Branding (Marca Andorra), establishing the lowest possible limits to foreign investment if we want it to be a world reference for investors, entrepreneurs, and multinationals in 5-10 years.

Andorra should aspire to be an entrepreneurial hub (and Living Lab) concentrated in a few square kilometers and able to generate more than 50% (of its GDP) on diversified business models, reducing its dependence on tourism and commerce – which should also continue to be important, as one of the two main sectors of the economy.

As a country, we must take a step forward to be an educational reference in the field of new technologies and studies related to sports, medicine, biology, and more. Likewise, the country must become one of the capitals of international luxury in 10 years, offering an unparalleled offer of leisure, gastronomy, sports, health, etc.

The basis for the country’s growth should depart from a well-oriented promotion of the Andorran brand to a substantial improvement of the financial market offer (elimination of the oligopoly), and a government committed to economic diversification and foreign investment.

I believe that legal smart contracts, public registry of companies, and property based in blockchain technology will be some of the next challenges for states. Reducing bureaucracy and the need for professionals to certify transactions when there is already technology that can do so will begin to make no sense within the next several years.

The implementation of partnerships with companies specializing in cryptocurrency traceability should be established in every bank in the country as soon as possible, as well as the possibility of depositing cryptocurrencies in banking entities – with the ability to dispose, pledge, mortgage, or introduce them into the legal sector in the form that is desired by the consumer.

The Summit-2024 and its potential participants

I would like one of the main exchanges in the world to have a presence here via a representative of their company. It would be ideal for a world-class banking institution to attend the Summit, as well as companies specialized in the creation of trading or arbitrage algorithms (or even artificial intelligence) and as entrepreneurs able to program B2B and B2C smart contracts in Web 3 models and who have websites that already operate with the general public on an international basis. Furthermore, big brands that have developed the collaterals of their own products with NFTs could make their presentations at the Summit, which would be magnificent.

The presence of a member of the European institutions that has promoted the MICA regulations would be relevant. It would also be very convenient that the maximum number of companies in the country sponsor the event, to generate an even greater consensus as a nation. Lastly, it would be fantastic to hold an opening or closing party for the Summit in which the entrance tickets could be carried out or developed by a company specialized in the issuance of blockchain based utility tokens.

I hope that next year the Summit can also be held in English, even though I consider that, for the moment, having Spanish as the reference language is relevant due to the target that is being reached”.

Read more: Opinion ...