Regulations in the United States have been quite hostile for crypto-businesses, and this has forced several companies to shut down shop in the nation. Voicing his concerns regarding the lack of regulatory clarity, Ripple Executive Chairman Chris Larsen has said that this could force the San Francisco-based blockchain payments giant to move abroad.
Speaking at the LA Blockchain Summit, Larsen said that his company would be compelled to move operations elsewhere if the regulatory environment in the US doesn’t allow cryptocurrency companies to compete globally.
“To be honest with you, we’re even looking at relocating our headquarters to a much more friendly jurisdiction,” Larsen said.
He even compared the US scenario with that of Europe and Asia, naming London, Switzerland, Singapore, and Japan, who he said are looking to become “FinTech centers of the world”, trying to create jobs and wealth.
He added that with those jurisdictions “you have the advantage of happening the capital markets, the regulators, and the innovators all in the same city.”
However, this isn’t the case in the United States, where he says a lack of cooperation prevails as New York investors, Washington lawmakers, and Silicon Valley tech entrepreneurs “don’t understand each other.”
“The whole tenor continues to be one of frustration that we don’t have more clarity and we don’t have more of a pro-US approach,” he continued.
Regulators are killing it
He also pointed towards the crackdowns of US regulatory bodies, especially the Securities and Exchange Commission, stating that “all things blockchain and digital currency start and end” with regulatory bodies like the SEC.
“I don’t think that the posture at the SEC today can possibly get worse for [the crypto and blockchain] industry. It’s just ‘crush it and push it away.’”
Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse voiced a tweet in favor of Larsen, saying:
“Strongest internet companies built in the US, in part b/c of regulatory clarity. We have that opp with blockchain + digital assets. Responsible players like Ripple aren’t looking to avoid rules, we just want to operate in a jurisdiction where the rules are clear. #DCEA of 2020”
Ripple’s concerns regarding the future of the company are justified, especially since the firm is amidst a class-action lawsuit with the SEC regarding the sale of its native token XRP, which the regulator states, was an unregistered securities offering.There has been no official word from the SEC so far other than the publication of the 2019 “Framework for Investment Contract Analysis of Digital Assets”.