Crypto Rules Get Final Approval to Make Europe a Global Leader in Regulation


The European Union has successfully passed a comprehensive set of regulations aimed at strengthening oversight of the cryptocurrency sector.

The new rules, known as Markets in Crypto Assets (MiCA), have received final approval from member states and are set to make the EU a global leader in regulating this rapidly evolving industry.

The European Council’s adoption of MiCA marks the final stage in the legislative process, following the endorsement of the rules by the European Parliament in April.

The implementation of these regulations is expected to occur gradually, with the first phases taking effect from July 2024 onwards.

These stricter regulations are a response to several high-profile cryptocurrency scandals that have occurred recently, such as the collapse of trading firm FTX and the failure of the TerraUSD stablecoin.

By introducing MiCA, the EU aims to enhance consumer protection, mitigate financial risks, combat money laundering, and foster market integrity within the cryptocurrency ecosystem.

The newly approved regulations in the European Union are focused on enhancing transparency, combating money laundering, and regulating stablecoins.

Stablecoins, which are often backed by a hard currency or a commodity like gold to reduce volatility, will be included in these rules.

The regulations also extend to cover other digital tokens and services related to Bitcoin, such as trading platforms and digital wallets. However, it is important to note that Bitcoin itself is not directly subject to these specific regulations.

These measures are intended to address the specific characteristics and risks associated with different types of cryptocurrencies and digital assets, ensuring that they operate within a transparent and accountable framework.

By imposing regulatory oversight on various aspects of the cryptocurrency sector, the EU aims to protect consumers, prevent illicit activities, and maintain the integrity of financial markets.

Swedish Finance Minister Elisabeth Svantesson, during the rotating presidency of the European Council, emphasized the necessity of implementing regulations to safeguard European investors and prevent the exploitation of cryptocurrencies for money laundering and terrorist financing.

The Markets in Crypto Assets (MiCA) framework, which has been under development since 2020, requires crypto companies to obtain approval to operate within the EU and holds them accountable for any loss of investor assets.

Additionally, a public list of “noncompliant” companies will be compiled by authorities.

The regulations aim to uphold financial stability and combat market manipulation and insider trading.

Furthermore, major crypto companies will be required to disclose their energy consumption, addressing concerns surrounding the significant energy usage associated with Bitcoin mining and its carbon footprint.

In contrast, the United States has made limited progress in strengthening oversight of cryptocurrencies and digital assets, while the United Kingdom is currently seeking feedback on proposed crypto regulations that were outlined last year.

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