UK launches an inquiry into cryptocurrencies

The inquiry by UK Treasury Select Committee will examine the risks and possible benefits of crypto for investors
22 February 2018   180

European governments are quite cautious about cryptocurrencies and investments into them. And the regulatory base is as of now a lot more sparse, than one in America and Asia. But UK has announced that the Treasury Select Committee is launching an inquiry into cryptocurrencies and the distributed ledger technology that is the base of all crypto networks.

The inquiry will study the risks and opportunities presented by digital currencies for businesses and individual investors. Also, the government wants to see the possible benefits for itself from integrating cryptocurrencies and blockchain into daily operations.

Nicky Morgan, the Chair of the Treasury Select Committee, told the press that public interest in cryptocurrencies is rising, but the investments are unregulated and unprotected by the laws. High risks involved in this market are worrying. She added, that finding the right balance between regulating digital currencies for protection of individual investors and allowing the freedom of innovation is necessary in this case, so the Committee's goal isn't stomping down on overall usage of digital currencies.

This notion is just a next step in widespread action taken by EU governments to regulate cryptocurrencies. Lawmakers all around the Europe are discussing the possible governmental stance on crypto. For example, France and Germany have announced the joint effort which will present a set of regulation in the field during the next G20 summit.

Cryptocurrency to be Regulated in France

French Ministry of the Economy and Finances creates working group to regulate cryptocurrency
22 March 2018   117

Bruno Le Maire, the French Minister of the Economy, announced the government initiative to constitute the instructions and regulations towards cryptocurrency. The group is also aimed to decrease the influence of Bitcoin and altcoins to the formal system of economy with the help of required concept. These measures would help French government to prevent tax avoidance and some other criminal activities (such as money laundering).

In an op-ed that was published in French media this week the Minister of the Economy Bruno Le Maire made a promise not to miss the blockchain revolution. He refined the reasons of the French authorities`decision to regulate the technology. According to his point of view, it is impossible for any consumer or entrepreneur to carry out a transaction, invest, develop in business being in a regulatory vacuum. The Minister also put this position on the top among the rest questions to be discussed at G20 Summit in Buenos Aires. Bruno Le Maire is sure that the role of France is to be a driving force in “building the world of tomorrow”.

The Minister is going to present his case at the G20 Summit in 2018 in Argentina. He hopes that the framework can help in decreasing illegal activity in cryptocurrencies. Le Maire also explained that the sphere of digital funds is extremely attractive for criminals.

The leader of the working group is Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of France Jean-Pierre Landau. The French Central Bank supports the Government and hopes there would be no negative impact and consequences for the traditional economy system.

The key object of cryptocurrency regulation is to limit various negative factors in the financial sphere caused by digital money, such as the price volatility. Le Maire claims that at the same time the regulation of the cryptocurrency can support the development of the technology and can even lead to the economic growth. As blockchain can destroy not only traditional daily practices in banking and financial markets, but also patents and certified acts, the French Minister of Economy urges that the working group should foresee all these changes and become “actors of this revolution”, instead of simple viewers.