ECB officials prepare for ‘harmonization’ of crypto regulations: Report

The European Central Bank, or ECB, will reportedly be preparing to implement a new law by warning European Union member states about the necessity of harmonizing regulations for crypto.

According to a Sunday report from the Financial Times, the ECB was concerned about possible regulatory overlap between respective central banks in the EU and crypto companies as officials prepare to implement the Markets in Crypto-Assets, or MiCA, framework. The European Parliament, European Commission, and European Council reached an agreement on June 30 to bring crypto issuers and service providers within their jurisdictional control under a single regulatory framework.

Regulators from 19 EU member states will reportedly attend a supervisory board meeting in July to discuss MiCA and its possible implementation. Once implemented, the law will require asset service providers to adhere to certain requirements aimed at protecting investors as well as warn clients about the potential risk of investing in a volatile crypto market. EU officials will also have an 18-month review period to assess the proposed regulatory framework and determine whether it includes other crypto-related products like nonfungible tokens, or NFTs.

“It’s very challenging,” reportedly said an unnamed national regulator. “With MiCA 18 months away, are you better to say, ‘until it’s in, do what you like, there’s no regulation’ or are you better to try to get a handle on it?”

Related: Consolidation and centralization: How Europe’s new AML regulation will affect crypto

Before the passage of MiCA, financial regulators from individual European Union member states largely had to handle crypto regulation within their own borders – though officials recently reached an agreement on forming an authority for supervising anti-money laundering regulations for crypto firms. In Germany, the Federal Financial Supervisory Authority, or BaFin, is responsible for issuing licenses to crypto firms interested in offering services within the country.

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