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UK Treasury Launches Inquiry on Crypto-Related Risks and Opportunities



The request for evidence on crypto-related matters comes as UK lawmakers look to close the regulatory vacuum in the sector. 

The UK Treasury Committee has launched an inquiry into the risks and opportunities posed by crypto-assets to businesses and consumers.

  • According to the official note, the inquiry is requesting evidence related to the potential impact of distributed ledger technology (DLT) on financial institutions, including the central bank and financial infrastructure.
  • The Treasury also seeks to cover areas such as regulatory response to crypto-assets from the government, the FCA, as well as the Bank of England. It also wants to know how the industry is currently being regulated across other jurisdictions to provide adequate protection for consumers and businesses without stifling innovation.
  • Matters relating to opportunities and risks the introduction of a BoE Digital Currency brings, the impact of crypto on social inclusion, and the ability of the government and regulators “grasp the opportunities” presented by crypto assets are some areas that the Treasury has sought submissions for.
  • The Committee said that the submissions must be made by September 12.
  • The latest inquiry is also requesting evidence on how effective the regulatory measures regarding advertising as well as money laundering have been so far.
  • UK advertising watchdogs – Advertising Standards Authority – banned seven cryptocurrency ads in December last year.
  • More recently, it warned over 50 crypto firms to review their ads and ensure they were in compliance with the rules. The government essentially sought to bring crypto ads under the same rules for financial promotions.
  • Lately, Britain has taken a tougher line on the crypto industry and has been accelerating efforts to address hot-button issues.

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