Europe is one of the major territories that are bolstering the adoption of cryptocurrencies in its own way. Considering the fact that the EU contributes 22% of all economic activity in the globe, it has a major impact on the cryptocurrency industry as well.
EU has been preparing new rules for tokens that are based on blockchain technology for more than two years. EU officials had already anticipated that new legislation would be necessary to tackle this emerging asset class.
The nation has also been actively blocking the development of private global stablecoins like Libra. Considering all the nations that have been a hurdle in Libra’s path, it has certainly been the most difficult. The European Central Bank has long recognized and written about cryptocurrencies but has expressed concerns over the notion of global stablecoins.
In the latest development, popular mobile brokerage BUX has acquired Blockport, a European social cryptocurrency investment platform. Blockport will now be rebranded to as BUX crypto and will be operating under the BUX brand. The terms of the deal have not been disclosed, but BUX claims that this acquisition will pave a path for its own cryptocurrency investment application.
Once launched, BUX Crypto users will be able to access a variety of financial assets and markets, including Bitcoin, Ethereum and XRP. The Blockport Token will also be rebranded to the BUX Token.
DLT not Crypto
For the ECB, it appears as if they have identified DLT as an option that helps strike a balance between a certain degree of privacy in electronic payments and ensuring compliance with regulations aimed at tackling money laundering and the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT regulations).
This Eurochain proof of concept drawn up by the European System of Central Banks (ESCB), is being subbed as a simplified CBDC payment system where apart from minting the tokens itself, ECB will give users some degree of privacy. However, the project bears a close resemblance to Libra.
Addressing Money Laundering
Europe has also announced the Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive (5AMLD) last month that is set to be implemented throughout the nation on January 10, 2020. This is also going to be the first nationwide directives that aim at introducing more transparency within the system to help fight money laundering and terrorist financing.
The directives address Cryptocurrencies as ‘obliged entities’, set to be subject to the same regulations applied to institutions under the 4AMLD, including combating the financing of terrorism and money laundering. This involves an obligation to perform customer due diligence and submit suspicious activity reports.
Businesses slowly starting to Flourish
Cryptocurrency businesses are also starting to flourish within the nation. Last month, Fidelity Investments, one of the world’s leading financial services firms, announced the launch of a new entity to serve European institutions.
Tom Jessop, head of Corporate Business Development for Fidelity Investments and president of Fidelity Digital Assets SM said:
“We’re also encouraged by continued corporate and venture investment in market infrastructure companies as well as the entry of traditional exchanges into the digital assets ecosystem. These and other market indicators, alongside interest expressed from the U.K. and European client prospects, indicate a market with increasing potential which gives us the confidence to expand the digital assets business geographically.”
Due to the absence of proper regulations until now, various crypto-based businesses and blockchain startups have had to move to other crypto-friendly countries especially in the Asian region. However, recent developments have reaffirmed that there is still hope as Europe has been very active in the emerging industry lately.
There are high chances that the recent BUX acquisition and other developing businesses in this sector would be a boost for Europe to compete with the Asian countries. Bux believes that cryptocurrency will play a “vital role” in the future of the financial ecosystem. And the inclusion of the crypto asset class would allow the company to call itself a “360-degree solution.”