Gibraltar is one of the most welcoming countries to cryptocurrencies and ICOs. Gibraltars light touch regulatory practices allow ample space for an ICO community to continue to thrive and will only made more attractive by recent EU regulations.
Gibraltar is located in Europe (non-EU): For the most part, European countries outside the EU have adopted a laissez-faire attitude to cryptocurrency regulation, driven strongly by Switzerland.
Cryptocurrency trading in Gibraltar
On January 1st mechanisms to protect customers of cryptocurrency businesses in Gibraltar went into effect. The regulations targets blockchain based companies. According to the government, “the use of distributed ledger technology (DLT) for storing or transmitting value belonging to others (DLT activities), needs to be authorised by the Gibraltar Financial Services Commission (GFSC) as a DLT Provider.”
These are sets of principles rather than laws and the GFSC say they’ll be flexible and accommodating to the needs of individual companies.
“We are really excited to finally welcome applications from DLT providers. We expect to be very busy in the coming months”, Nicky Gomez, head of GFSC’s Risk and Innovation Department has said. “We are looking forward to working on some interesting and innovative ideas with applicants.”
The DLT Regulatory Framework was formed in collaboration with the financial services industry and the government of Gibraltar, a first for these sorts of regulators. “It is a very encouraging time and we are looking forward to the challenge”, the official said.
Regulation of ICOs in Gibraltar
While there is currently minimal regulation on ICOs in Gibraltar, it looks like the country is examining what regulations might look like, albeit with a light touch approach.
The statements on ICOs are welcoming, as the regulator looks like it will enact a more lenient regulatory apparatus pertaining to ICOs. GFSC is “considering a complementary regulatory framework covering the promotion and sale of tokens, aligned with the DLT framework,” according to a September statement.
The GFSC also highlights the unregulated nature of the current ICO industry, but in a positive way that differs from other countries, noting that ICOs are “often used by start-ups to bypass the rigorous and regulated capital-raising process required by venture capitalists or financial institutions.”
In January the Gibraltar stock exchange announced it aims to become the first EU-regulated stock exchange to offer a licensed and regulated utility token sale platform in its new subsidiary the Gibraltar Blockchain Exchange (GBX).
Cryptocurrency markets in Gibraltar
Gibraltar has a robust cryptocurrency network with a number of exchanges, including hoping to start the Gibraltar Blockchain Exchange (GBX). THe past lax regulations of Gibraltar have allowed the country to become a key country for crypto gatherings and start ups.
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