Bermuda to Improve Land Registry via Blockchain

The Bermuda Government is planning to transfer its property deed system to blockchain
26 January 2018   263

Bermuda Premier David Burt said at the World Economic Forum in Davos that the country is aiming to make the government more efficient switching its property deed system to blockchain.

Bermuda has an old school, deeds-based property system. What we are going to do is transfer our registry to the blockchain. Clearly, it needs to be transparent, so people know what’s there and secure, and that way we know who owns what at any point in time.

 

David Burt

The Premier of Bermuda

Burt also talked about the country’s “progressive” ambitions in the blockchain space. He said Bermuda is known for high-standard regulation, anti-money laundering, know-your-customer (KYC), and compliance.

The idea to migrate its property deeds system to the blockchain has been aired in the past month in Bermuda. Last month, Stan Stalnaker, founding director of Bermudian-headquartered Hub Culture, said digital assets such as property title deeds, marriage certificates, vehicle registration documents, and ownership contracts will end up on blockchain.

In November 2017 we have reported that the government of Bermuda founded a blockchain task group to promote cryptocurrency commerce in the British overseas territory. The task force is part of the government’s initiative to advance the island’s regulatory environment as destination for cryptocurrencies and initial coin offerings (ICO).

German Financial Regulator Clarifies Stance on ICOs

The Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht (BaFin) has clarified its position on ICOs
22 February 2018   52

German financial regulator admitted it was receiving many inquiries about the status of tokens and cryptocurrencies. According to an advisory letter, BaFin provides some basic definitions of ICOs and related terms. It is important because the results of a new survey showed that more than two-thirds of Germans know about bitcoin.

In this letter, BaFin educates the public and explains how tokens are typically generated, how blockchain works and that ICOs are used to raise funds for startup projects. The note states that for regulatory purposes, ICOs, tokens, coins, and cryptocurrencies are subject to the existing provisions in the field of securities supervision and other relevant national and EU laws.

The authority advises participants in ICOs to check and follow rules applicable to regulated financial instruments, such as securities. If businesses or individuals have any doubts about regulations, they should approach BaFin.

According to BaFin, companies should fulfill any obligations under the Banking Act and the Capital Investment Code, the Insurance Supervision Act and the Payment Services Supervision Act. The transactions may be prohibited if relevant regulatory requirements are not met.

The authority also states that legal classification of tokens requires precise examination. It will determine their status on a case-by-case basis after studying their features. The token should be transferable and tradable on cryptocurrency trading platforms in order to be classified as a security.