The United Kingdom has made its intentions clear to establish a solid foundation for the cryptocurrency industry. In a recent publication, the U.K. government has outlined its plans to introduce formal legislation governing crypto activities by 2024. With the increasing prominence of digital assets such as Bitcoin, the government’s proactive stance is seen as a necessary step to ensure both industry growth and investor protection.
On Monday, the U.K. government presented its response to a consultation paper released earlier this year. This paper had provided recommendations on the regulation of the crypto sphere. After gathering insights from a diverse range of stakeholders including crypto and fintech companies, traditional financial institutions, public members, academic professionals, and legal consultants, the government has drawn up a definitive plan.
The proposals in the paper suggest bringing various cryptoasset activities under the same regulatory umbrella as banks and other established financial entities. Andrew Griffith, the U.K. financial services minister, expressed his enthusiasm for the proposals, stating, “I am very pleased to present these final proposals for cryptoasset regulation in the UK on behalf of the Government.” He further emphasized the U.K.’s vision to become a global hub for cryptoasset technology. Among the proposed regulations, the U.K. government aims to implement stricter rules for crypto exchanges, custodians, and lending companies. This includes enhanced regulations against market abuses and more transparent cryptoasset issuance and disclosures.
While the specific details of the upcoming U.K. crypto laws remain undisclosed, there is speculation on how they might align or differ from the European Union’s MiCA (Markets in Crypto-Assets) regulation, which has set a clear framework for digital assets, including a licensing process for crypto firms. It’s noteworthy that the U.K. appears to be leading the charge in crypto regulation compared to other tech-dominant nations. For instance, while numerous bills are under review in the U.S. Congress, the U.S. lags in establishing formal federal laws for the cryptocurrency industry.