UK government announces ‘robust’ crypto regulation as part of economic crime plan

The United Kingdom government plans to increase regulation of crypto assets in its efforts to respond to economic crime in the country.

In a policy note published on March 30, the UK Treasury and Home Office said it planned to “strongly” regulate crypto to combat illegal use of the digital asset. The focus on regulation was part of the government’s Economic Offenses Plan from 2023 to 2026, which seeks to assess and strengthen how law enforcement agencies can seize and store crypto-assets involved in judicial processes, “to enhance the knowledge and pooling capabilities”.

“These steps will be in line with our ambition to make the UK an attractive destination for cryptoassets and cryptoasset innovation in the world,” the plan states. “As challenging as it is, effective regulation of crypto assets benefits everyone, including consumers and businesses.”

According to the policy note, the UK government said it expected criminals to shift their crypto transactions to “less regulated exchanges and services” in other jurisdictions. The country’s Financial Conduct Authority, or FCA – one of the bodies behind the enforcement of crypto asset regulation – will work with its international counterparts to exchange information on its response to crypto regulation and oversight.

“The [National Crime Agency]The UK National Assessment Center estimates that UK-linked illicit crypto asset transactions are likely to amount to at least £1.24 billion (~1% of total transaction value) in 2021, based on UK transaction volume estimates was, with a real possibility that they were much higher. ,

As part of its action plan, the government said it has coordinated with various agencies to implement the Financial Action Task Force’s travel rule and properly pass the Economic Offenses and Business Transparency Act by the end of the fourth quarter of 2023. planned to do. The second quarter of 2024 involves improving communication between the FCA and crypto companies.

Connected: UK Police Board Reports Each Unit Has Officers Trained In Crypto Enforcement

While the UK is pursuing the response to crypto on several fronts – from law enforcement to regulation – taxpayers in the country face reporting obligations of their own. On March 15, the UK Treasury released a report announcing that it would be replacing crypto asset self-assessment forms from the 2024-2025 tax year.

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