From Bat-Signal to Bitcoin: Projecting ‘orange pill’ on banks as EU pushes crypto regulation

“The signal goes and it shows. That’s what happened. That’s how it should be.” Whenever Gotham is faced with an existential threat, the Bat-Signal lights up the night sky. In the DC Comics universe, Batman always shows up to save the day when called upon.

Bitcoiners in Germany used a similar tactic this week, emblazoning the leading cryptocurrency’s logo on the side of the European Central Bank building in Frankfurt with the message “STUDY BITCOIN.” The images were shared widely on social media, with notable bitcoin (BTC) advocates and several company profiles praising the display.

A dose of the proverbial ‘orange pill’ is particularly relevant as the global banking sector hits the headlines following the collapse of major institutions such as Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank in the US.

Meanwhile, European lawmakers have passed a new draft law aimed at combating money laundering and terrorist financing, outlining possible new regulations imposing KYC requirements for traditional financial and crypto-related services.

In addition, lawmakers are seeking to ban cash and cryptocurrency payments for goods and services where the customers cannot be identified. Under the draft law, the rules limit cash payments for cryptocurrency transactions to €7,000 – or €1,000 if the user’s identity is unknown.

Related: There Are Many Reasons For Silicon Valley Bank’s Demise, But Crypto Isn’t One

These proposed new rules are separate from the upcoming Markets in Crypto-Assets (MiCA) Act of the European Parliament due to come into force in 2024, a proposed set of rules and guidelines aimed at regulating the cryptocurrency market in Europe.

Liam Murphy, managing director of EMEA at Waksman, told Cointelegraph that the AML-CFT bill, passed on March 28, aims to pass stricter regulations to bridge the gap in the fight against money laundering, terrorist financing and piracy. Restrictions in the European Union.

“This is a different policy trajectory for MICA, however, as with many policy actions, there is some crossover. It should be noted that this was just another step in the regulatory process and the bill is a long way from passage.

Murphy said he was seeking more clarity on whether the limit on cryptocurrency transactions only applies to commercial transactions and not private transfers.

Noting that Wachsman serves many cryptocurrency service providers as a communications firm, Murphy said industry participants are increasingly realizing that the industry can use regulation to unlock its full potential. .

“Innovation is unpredictable by nature. We are living through a digital revolution and the threat of both over-regulation and under-regulation is real.”

Erwin Volodar, senior policy officer at the European Blockchain Association, also spoke to Cointelegraph about the implications of the European Parliament bill for cryptocurrency payments.

He stressed that more clarity on AML/CTF provisions is welcome, but claimed that a double standard is constantly being applied to crypto payments.

Volodar said that MEPs had previously backed down on the requirement to go through CASP for the KYC process under Article 59A as it would be unnecessarily burdensome, according to industry feedback:

“The extent of crypto transactions makes it clear that crypto transactions are 7 times as risky as cash transactions from an AML/CTF perspective, which is inconsistent with available global money laundering data.”

It is still difficult to gauge whether cryptocurrency services such as decentralized finance (DeFi) protocols and even decentralized autonomous organizations will be governed by the potential new laws.

“MiCA omits ‘fully decentralized finance’ because chain of liability is often difficult to determine.”

Volodar used an example, as DeFi platforms may have an interface that is “client-facing,” but the actual economic activity takes place within the smart contract, which is “abstracted and independent of the interface layer.”

This shows that a strategy is being created on the fringes of the industry that could bring accountability and standard reporting obligations to the DeFi space, including NFTs.

The AML-focused law brings crypto under its purview to tighten commercial transactions across Europe. Meanwhile, the cryptocurrency space shines a wider spotlight on the recent shortcomings of the traditional banking sector. What remains to be answered is which industry still needs further investigation.

magazine: 4 out of 10 NFT sales are fake: Learn to recognize the signs of wash trading

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