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HomeBusinessBelgian Regulator Says Bitcoin, Ethereum Don't Need to Comply with Financial Rules

Belgian Regulator Says Bitcoin, Ethereum Don't Need to Comply with Financial Rules

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Jack Schickler is a CoinDesk reporter focusing on crypto regulation, based in Brussels, Belgium. He doesn’t own any cryptocurrency.

Cryptocurrencies without issuers, such as bitcoin (BTC) and ether (ETH), are not securities, the Belgian Financial Services and Markets Authority said on Thursday.

Regulator Says It Receives More and More Questions About Cryptocurrency Regulation dealt with and hoped to address the most frequently occurring gray areas, including when digital assets could be classified as securities.

The debate over when cryptocurrencies are securities has led to court action in jurisdictions such as the U.S., with the SEC saying Ripple Labs should Register its cryptocurrency XRP.

FSMA added that the Belgian rules are “technically neutral”, suggesting that the classification of assets as financial instruments or securities should not depend on Depending on whether the asset is using a blockchain or something more traditional.

The rules largely mirror those set out in a July consultation, which said that a transferable instrument with an issuer may constitute a security . That means they must provide potential investors with honest and informative prospectuses and must apply an EU law known as MiFID, which requires financiers to identify and avoid conflicts of interest. But cryptocurrencies like bitcoin don’t count because they don’t have an issuer.

Even if these rules do not apply, there is still a requirement for crypto firms to apply anti-money laundering procedures, the guidance said. A new EU law called Market Regulation in Cryptoassets (MiCA) is also coming into force in the next few years — and will require new crypto products to produce a white paper, similar to a share prospectus.

Belgian regulations passed in 2014 make it illegal for professionals to distribute cryptocurrency-based financial products to retail clients.


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Jack Schickler is a CoinDesk reporter focusing on crypto regulation and is based in Brussels, Belgium. He doesn’t own any cryptocurrency.

CoinDesk - Unknown

Jack Schickler is a CoinDesk reporter, Mainly focused on encryption regulations, based in Brussels, Belgium. He doesn’t own any cryptocurrency.

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