UK confirms plans to regulate crypto industry with formal legislation


Bitcoin, the world’s largest cryptocurrency, has been stealthily rising in 2023.
Chris Ratcliffe | Bloomberg | Getty Images

The U.K. government on Monday confirmed plans to regulate the cryptocurrency industry, announcing in a consultation paper that it will look to bring in formal legislation for crypto activities by 2024.

The government published its response to a consultation paper issued earlier this year, which outlined recommendations on regulating the crypto industry.

In the Monday paper, the government said it intends to bring a number of cryptoasset activities under the same regulations that govern banks and other financial services firms.

“I am very pleased to present these final proposals for cryptoasset regulation in the UK on behalf of the Government,” Andrew Griffith, the U.K. financial services minister, said in a statement.

“I look forward to our continued work with the sector in making our vision a reality for the UK as a global hub for cryptoasset technology.”

The government’s proposals include stricter rules for exchanges, custodians that store crypto on behalf of clients, and crypto lending companies.

The U.K. also proposes stricter regimes for market abuse and cryptoasset issuance and disclosures.

The government aims to introduce laws for the crypto industry before Parliament by 2024, according to the paper.

It is not immediately clear at this stage what U.K. laws on crypto will look like.

The EU set out a clear framework for digital assets with its MiCA (Markets in Crypto-Assets) regulation, including a licensing process for crypto firms.

The U.K. is further ahead in the process than other tech leading nations. Numerous bills are going through Congress, but the U.S. is far behind others when it comes to bringing about formal federal laws for the crypto industry.

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