Some of the EU member states have started taking notice and talking about the growing popularity of Bitcoin. Although this currency that operates on a decentralized network has been added to regulations concerning money laundering by the EU Senate, nothing further has been done so far. Pierre Moscovici, who is the Commissioner of EU’s Financial Affairs, said in a recent statement that there are no plans for any regulation or an official reaction to the cryptocurrency.
Bitcoin is a growing trend across the glove so it’s no wonder that many politicians and lawmakers have been talking about the subject of cryptocurrencies. Political entities from Asia, the United States, and the European Union have been considering the multitude of approaches possible when it comes to implementing ways to regulate the digital currency, and as a result, online exchanges and companies that deal with Bitcoin. Terror-funding, evasion of taxes, laundering of money and other illicit activities are what most concern Politicians in the European Union as well as their counterparts around the globe. Recently, EU lawmakers have added cryptocurrencies to a new Anti-Money Laundering Directive and now consider them monetary instruments on par with traditional currency, coins, checks, etc. According to the directive, wallet and exchange services have to now ask their users to submit proof of their identity. For some, this is already a big step in the wrong direction as it compromises the anonimity of Bitcoin users. Others, characterize the move as a live and let live approach.
Pierre Moscovici has made his stance clear when he said that the there are no plans to clamp down on Bitcoin. His statements dispel rumors of an impending EU crackdown on blockchain currencies. During an interview with Bloomberg Surveillance held by host Francine Laqua, the Financial Commissioner was asked candidly about future plans for regulation and Bitcoin. Lacqua can be quoted as asking the Financial Affairs Commissioner: “Mr.
Moscovici is the European Union taking a closer look at Bitcoin and are there any plans for regulation? His answer was:”We still do not see Bitcoin as a currency that could be an alternative currency to the Euro. The only obvious thing is that a lot of speculators are involved with the platform.””Sometimes speculation is overactive or exuberant — We look at that and analyzed the phenomenon, but we don’t think we have to react to bitcoin at this stage as a political and technical body.”The above-mentioned Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive features debit cards and digital currencies. In this regard, the legislation doesn’t differ much from what politicians and lawmakers are trying to draft in the United States.
Lacqua followed up with another question and asked Pierre Moscovici whether European politicians are mentioning the need for talks which could bring about Bitcoin regulation. The commissioner then gave a detailed answer to Lacqua saying that Bitcoin is not very often a subject of discussion amount regulators. What the program host failed to bring up is the fact that Bitcoin has managed to thrive despite being suppressed by some governments through new rules and regulations.
Even if the EU decides to regulate Bitcoin, they will have a tough task ahead of them.