EU ministers schedule meeting to discuss crypto regulation

August 30, 2018
Chris Wheal

Ministers from the European Union’s economic and financial affairs departments are to hold a meeting on the possibility of tightening regulations on digital assets, Bloomberg reported on Wednesday.

 

European Union schedules meeting to discuss tighter regulation of cryptocurrency market

Citing a draft note it had seen, Bloomberg said the participants will discuss the challenges posed by cryptocurrencies in areas such as terrorism funding, money laundering and tax evasion at a meeting in Vienna on 7 September.

EU delegates to the meeting are also expected to discuss areas that fall outside of European and global laws and financial regulations such as unregulated exchanges.

July paper

In a paper published in July, the European Parliament – the elected legislative body of the EU – examined the legal landscape of cryptocurrencies and their use in financial crimes and recommended policy approaches to the growing digital asset sector.

It’s first problem was the anonymity surrounding cryptocurrencies and suggested the existing European legal framework was failing to deal with the issue.

It also raised concerns that a number of key players in the crypto market were not included under current anti-money laundering (AML) legislation leaving blind spots in the fight against financial crime. For this it suggested mandatory registration to participate in the market and “for some aspects relating to some cryptocurrencies a ban should be considered”.

Greater oversight

The meeting on 7 September is expected to underline these issues as delegates discuss a new regulatory approach.

The authors of the July paper concluded: “These cryptocurrencies must have greater regulatory oversight in order to prevent illegal activity and illegitimate use.

“The problem is a significant one: even though the full scale of misuse of virtual currencies is unknown, its market value has been reported to exceed €7bn worldwide.”

OpenLedger called the European Union press office for a copy of the draft schedule, but had heard no response at the time of publish, so look out for later updates.

Post written by Chris Wheal
Chris Wheal is editor of OpenLedger's news and features service. An award-wining business journalists himself, he runs a team of freelance journalists from across the UK and north America.

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