Crypto Seems to be Frowned Upon (Regulatory Digest, Nov 23–29)

Some recent selected news about Gibraltar Financial Services Commission, US Colorado, UK, New Zealand's BTC-e, Nigeria, Uganda, Malaysia, Taiwan, etc.

  • The Gibraltar Blockchain Exchange (GBX) attains a license from the Gibraltar Financial Services Commission. The GBX is said to be the first exchange to be authorized by the financial services body. It launched back in July and currently offers trading pairs with USD.
  • Colorado released cease-and-desist orders to four ICO projects. The four are Cred, CrowdShare Mining, CyberSmart Coin Invest, and Global Pay Net. Overall, the US State suppressed 18 illegal ICOs, including DavorCoin (DAV).
  • Venezuela’s Constituent National Assembly passes legislation on cryptocurrency regulation. The bill, proposed by Nicolas Maduro, legalizes the country’s cryptocurrency Petro. Petro can now be used as a unit of exchange to pay for goods and services in the country.
  • Thailand cultivates a friendlier environment for cryptocurrencies. Despite being in a military dictatorship, the country’s military junta worked to advance cryptocurrencies by approving exchanges, legalizing ICOs, and regulating the market. With the elections drawing near, it is said that cryptocurrencies will be a crucial part in Thai economics and politics.
  • New Zealand’s WEX.nz website, previously known as BTC-e, is suspended by the Domain Name Commission (DNC). The suspension comes as a result of suspicions on the authenticity of its registration details. WEX advised users to go to its site mirror wex.link.
  • Atiku Abubakar promises Nigerians he will be accepting of blockchain and cryptocurrencies if he wins the presidential elections. He plans to make Nigeria a technologically knowledgeable country by adding cryptocurrencies and distributed ledger technologies into the elementary and tertiary curriculum. Akitu served as Nigeria’s Vice President for eight years until 2007. He is at present the country’s opposition leader.
  • Germany’s Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) is proposing to use blockchain technology to fight tax fraud. Christian Hirte, Parliamentary State Secretary at BMWi, believes that using the technology could guarantee that taxes are trackable anytime.
  • The US SEC probe on Riot Blockchain is still ongoing. Riot Blockchain is investigated due to its nebulous registration statements presented by the company’s board. The company is also suspected of participating in a pump-and-dump scheme.
  • Uganda’s Planning and Finance Ministry completed a draft bill for a new crypto-related regulation. The East African country has seen a rise in Bitcoin Ponzi schemes and online scams with thousands of locals defrauded. The draft bill is expected to be introduced to the parliament for discussions and approval next month.
  • Taiwan strengthens regulations on AML directed at cryptocurrency exchanges. The newly approved legislation states the Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) has the authorization to monitor exchanges and prevent suspicious transactions. The country’s Ministry of Justice (MoJ) says the government is laboring to meet international AML standards. But some speculate the new AML bill is compelled by China.
  • The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) of the UK is preparing to restrain fraudulent cryptocurrency activities in the nation’s market. 24 firms are being investigated for operating without a license or permission. In order to curb illicit activities, the FCA will be partnering with Her Majesty’s Treasury (HMT) and the Bank of England to confront the damages and promote a beneficial innovative future.
  • In an address to Parliament, the Finance Minister of Malaysia, Lim Guan Eng, forewarns locals and businesses against issuing new cryptocurrencies. The MP recommends waiting for lawful regulation from the Central Bank, the Bank Negara Malaysia.

Don’t do it without Bank Negara’s guidelines or directive on the matter to avoid doing something wrong and against the law

Lim Guan Eng, Finance Minister of Malaysia

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