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2018全球加密货币监管概览-欧洲篇

全新的互联网金融模式国际资讯监管与政策

2018全球加密货币监管概览-欧洲篇

如果说2017年是首次代币发行(ICO)的一年,那么2018年似乎注定成为政府管理加密货币的关键一年。

由于世界各国都在着手处理并试图确定如何解决加密货币问题,形势逐渐变得严峻起来。有些国家对加密货币持友好态度,有些国家持谨慎态度,还有一些则表示明确反对。

本系列文章共分四章,在今天这篇文章中,我们将主要向您介绍一下欧洲地区的加密货币监管政策。

相关阅读:《2018全球加密货币监管概览-亚太篇》、2018全球加密货币监管概览-美洲篇》、《2018全球加密货币监管概览-非洲篇

英国/欧盟

按照原定的退欧计划,英国将和欧盟在2019年3月彻底分道扬镳,但是英国和欧盟仍然对于监管加密货币持一致观点。

2017年12月4日,英国的《卫报》和《电讯报》报道称,英国财政部和欧盟均制定了计划,剑指终止加密货币匿名交易,并强调要打击对于反洗钱和逃税。

欧盟的计划是要求加密货币平台对消费者进行适当且尽职的调查,并上报一切可疑交易。英国财政部也强调了他们"在尝试将虚拟货币交易平台及钱包提供商纳入反洗钱和打击恐怖分子的金融监管范畴中......现在几乎没有加密货币用于洗钱的证据,但是相应的风险却很有可能会增长。"

2017年12月18日,一位欧盟议员Pierre Moscovici接受彭博社采访时说道,欧盟并没指望监管比特币。该议员的论调看起来与之前欧盟一系列信息并不符合。在两天以后,Moscovici的说法被欧洲委员会(欧盟的行政部门)副主席Vldis Dombrovskis驳回。他对布鲁塞尔的记者说道:

"对于投资者和顾客而言,其中存在非常明显的价格波动风险,包括了投资全部打水漂的风险、运营和安全风险、市场操纵以及负债缺口的风险。"

2018年1月,欧洲出现了要求严格监管加密货币的呼声。2018年1月15日,法国经济部长Bruno Le Maire宣布成立一支工作小组,其目的是进行加密货币的监管。同样,德意志联邦银行的董事会成员之一Joachim Wuermeling,呼吁在全球范围内对虚拟货币进行有效的监管。

2018年1月22日,Dombrovskis提到了三个警惕比特币泡沫的欧盟监管者,并对加密货币监管计划进行了完善。2018年1月25日,受围攻的英国首相Theressa may 加入了这一争论,响应了国际货币基金组织主席Christine Lagarde以及美国总统Donald Trump的言论。

在达沃斯世界经济论坛中,英国首相对彭博社说道,"我们应当谨慎看待加密货币--原因是加密货币的使用目的,尤其是用于犯罪。"

瑞士

瑞士银行业对个人权利的积极态度众所周知。同样,该国对于加密货币监管也有着同样的态度。这个西欧国家显然缺席了欧盟会议,并且对于加密货币产业持有开放态度。

瑞士经济部长Johann Schneider-Ammann于2018年1月18日告诉记者,他希望瑞士能成为"加密货币之国。"根据《金融时报》的一篇文章,瑞士财政部的国务秘书Jörg Gasser说到,"我们希望ICO市场更加繁荣,不过前提是行业标准不妥协或者金融市场完整。"

为此,瑞士于2018年1月18日创建了一个ICO工作小组,目的是"增强合法确定性,保持金融中心的完整,确保技术中立的监管。"该工作小组将会于2018年底向瑞士联邦委员会进行汇报。

俄罗斯

像韩国一样,俄罗斯现在还不确定自己想如何处理加密货币监管问题。2017年9月,俄罗斯联邦中央银行主席Elvira Nabiukkina说道,中央银行反将加密货币视为货币(商品和服务的一种支付方式),反对将它们等同于外国货币。这一观点似乎预示着俄罗斯对于加密货币产业采取不干涉方式。

然而到2017年9月8日,俄罗斯联邦财政部副部长Alexei Moiseev在莫斯科的一次金融论坛上却告诉记者,加密货币支付"现在并不合法。"这位副部长还强调,"很明显,目前存在法律真空,而且很难说这些活动是合法的还是非法的。"

至此,俄罗斯联邦表现出来的态度只是允许"有资质的投资者"进行加密货币交易。在2017年10月11日,俄罗斯总统Vladimir Putin站在了财政部这边。他说道,使用加密货币会带来重大风险,为洗钱、逃税、资助恐怖主义以及传播骗局提供了机会,这些都会使俄罗斯公民成为受害者。

财政部延续了之前的强硬态度,在2017年12月28日建议对加密货币挖矿进行征税。新年初始,俄罗斯对加密货币进行进一步打击,Putin同样还是和财政部站到了一边。在2018年1月11日,他表明也许未来需要对加密货币市场的法律监管。

总统Putin表示,"这是中央银行的特权,中央银行也有足够的权利。不过,宽泛地说,在未来法律监管将是非常必要的。"

在两周以后的2018年1月25日,俄罗斯财政部发布了一份关于"数字金融资产"的法律草案。这份法案如果能确定下来,将会定义代币,制定ICO的程序,同时决定加密货币和挖矿的法律制度。

总统候选人Boris Titov公开反对2018年1月2日的法律提案,并表示这实在过于严格。Titov的新闻服务处表示,"财政部提议的监管比日本、瑞士、白俄罗斯和爱美尼亚都更强硬,也就是比所有有相关法律的国家都强硬。比起批准上述法律,还不如什么都不批。"

If 2017 was the year of the ICO, it seems as if 2018 is destined to become the year of regulatory reckoning.

Things have already begun to heat up as countries around the world grapple with cryptocurrencies and try to determine how they are going to treat them. Some are welcoming, others are cautious. And some countries are downright antagonistic.

United Kingdom/European Union

While Brexit is scheduled to force the U.K. and the European Union to part ways in March 2019, the United Kingdom and the EU remain united in their plans to regulate cryptocurrencies. On December 4, 2017, The Guardian and The Telegraph reported that the U.K. Treasury and the EU both had made plans aimed at ending anonymity for cryptocurrency traders, citing anti-money laundering and tax evasion crackdowns.

The European Union plan would require cryptocurrency platforms to conduct proper due diligence on customers and report any suspicious transactions. Likewise, the Treasury of the United Kingdom stated that they are “working to address concerns about the use of cryptocurrencies by negotiating to bring virtual currency exchange platforms and some wallet providers within anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing regulation.”

The Treasury did, however, add that “there is little current evidence of [cryptocurrencies] being used to launder money, though this risk is expected to grow.”

While one European Union commissioner, Pierre Moscovici, stated in an interview with Bloomberg on December 18, 2017, that the EU was not looking to regulate bitcoin, the commissioner’s statements seemed out of sync with prior and consequential messaging. Two days later, Moscovici’s message was seemingly countermanded by Valdis Dombrovskis, vice president of the European Commission (the Executive for the European Union), when he told reporters in Brussels that:

There are clear risks for investors and consumers associated to price volatility, including the risk of complete loss of investment, operational and security failures, market manipulation and liability gaps.

Calls for greater cryptocurrency regulations echoed across Europe in January 2018. On January 15, 2018, French Minister of the Economy Bruno Le Maire announced the creation of a working group with the purpose of regulating cryptocurrencies. Similarly, Joachim Wuermeling, a board member of the German Bundesbank, called for effective regulation of virtual currencies on a global scale.

On January 22, 2018, Dombrovskis furthered his regulatory agenda for cryptocurrencies by writing three of the EU’s watchdogs warning them of a bubble in bitcoin. On January 25, 2018, embattled U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May joined the fray, echoing the sentiments of International Monetary Fund head Christine Lagarde and U.S. President Donald Trump.

When speaking to Bloomberg during the World Economic Forum at Davos, the prime minister stated, “We should be looking at these very seriously — precisely because of the way they can be used, particularly by criminals.”

Switzerland

Switzerland, known for its progressive attitudes toward individual rights in banking, has kept a similar attitude toward cryptocurrency regulation. The Western European country is conspicuously absent from the European Union and appears to have an open attitude toward the cryptocurrency industry.

Johann Schneider-Ammann, economics minister, told reporters on January 18, 2018, that he wants Switzerland to be “the crypto-nation.” According to an article by the Financial Times, Jörg Gasser, state secretary at the Swiss finance ministry, stated, “We want it [the ICO market] to prosper but without compromising standards or the integrity of our financial markets.”

To that end, on January 18, 2018, the Swiss set up an ICO working group with an aim to “increase legal certainty, maintain the integrity of the financial center and ensure technology-neutral regulation.” The working group will report to the Swiss Federal Council by the end of 2018.

Russia

Russia, like South Korea, can’t seem to decide how it wants to handle cryptocurrency regulations. In September 2017, Russian Federation Central Bank chief Elvira Nabiullina said the central bank was against regulating cryptocurrencies as currency (as a payment for goods and services) and against equating them with a foreign currency. This statement seemed to indicate a progressive hands-off approach was in store for the cryptocurrency industry in Russia.

However, on September 8, 2017, the deputy finance minister for the Russian Federation, Alexei Moiseev, told reporters at a Moscow financial forum that settlements of payments in cryptocurrencies “are not legal now.” The deputy minister continued, stating, “Obviously, now there is a legal vacuum, and accordingly it’s hard for me to say if these actions are legal or not.”

Until these statements, the position proposed by the Russian Federation was to allow only “qualified investors” to deal with cryptocurrencies. Russian President Vladimir Putin sided with the position of the Finance Ministry on October 11, 2017, when the president said that the use of cryptocurrencies carries serious risks, being an opportunity for laundering criminal capitals, evading taxes, financing terrorism and spreading fraudulent schemes that would victimize Russian citizens.

The Finance Ministry continued its strict regulatory posturing by suggesting a taxation on cryptocurrency mining ventures on December 28, 2017. The new year began with even more hints at a Russian crackdown on cryptocurrencies, as Putin again sided with the Ministry of Finance on January 11, 2018, when he remarked that legislative regulation of the cryptocurrency market may be needed in the future.

President Putin stated, “This is the prerogative of the Central Bank at present and the Central Bank has sufficient authority so far. However, in broad terms, legislative regulation will be definitely required in the future.” (translation by TASS)

Two weeks later, on January 25, 2018, the Finance Ministry published a draft law “On Digital Financial Assets.” The law, if finalized, would define tokens, establish ICO procedures and determine the legal regime for cryptocurrencies and mining.

Presidential candidate Boris Titov decried the proposed legislation on January 26, 2018, stating that the draft law was excessively strict. According to Titov’s press service, “The Finance Ministry’s proposals present a much tougher regulation than in Japan, Switzerland, Belarus [and] Armenia; that is, in all countries that have adopted some form of legislation. It would be better not to adopt anything than to adopt such legislation.”

Further muddying the waters was a concession by Deputy Minister Moiseev that the December 2017 Belarusian adoption of the “Digital Economy Development Ordinance” could cause capital outflows from Russia to neighboring Belarus if heavy crypto-regulation occurred in the Russian Federation.


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