Albania’s Financial Supervisory Authority has approved a licensing regime for cryptocurrency exchanges, a first for the region, bolstering a crypto law passed in 2020.
The law refers to distributed ledger technology exchanges, which are exchanges where blockchain is used with digital tokens, digital assets, and those that use both digital assets and fiat currency. Under the licensing regime, DLT exchanges will fall into one of three categories; those who only use digital assets and digital tokens, those who use fiat and virtual currency, and those who trade in digital securities.
Licenses will be issued based on submission of detailed documentation, including business organization, business plans, source of capital and reputation. Once the application has been submitted, the responsible authorities will forward the file to a joint commission for examination and evaluation in accordance with the law.
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Decisions on applications will be based on protecting investors and the public, promoting stability and transparency in financial markets, ensuring compliance with the law, adequate security systems and protection against cyberattacks. The settlement will also assess the company’s administrator, board of directors, supervisory board and other key stakeholders.
Other requirements for licensing include sufficient capital, which can be in the form of funds or through a professional liability insurance policy.
The law “On financial markets based on distributed ledger technology” entered into force on September 1, 2020, but it has not yet been implemented due to the lack of implementing texts. In November 2021, the authorities approved two regulations on capital and equity adequacy and on the licensing of subjects who carry out the activity of digital token agent.
In June this year, Albania’s parliamentary assembly drafted a resolution asking the Financial Supervisory Authority (FSA) to approve regulatory acts on cryptocurrency and digital currencies by 2022, as the country hopes take advantage of the benefits offered by technology.
He also referenced MONEYVAL’s recent report that further measures were needed to address cryptocurrency risk.
“The next follow-up report for Albania concluded that this country has not significantly improved its anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing measures per FATF recommendations. Among other issues, the report looked at new international standards applied to virtual assets, including cryptocurrencies and the providers of these assets,” MONEYVAL said.
Albania is also expected to start taxing cryptocurrency by the end of 2023.
(Alice Taylor | Exit.al)
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Albania Moves Forward With Regulation Of Crypto Exchanges – EURACTIV.fr
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