Consultation Period for Federal Adoptions to Blockchain Development Laws Begin with Swiss Federal Council


The legal certainty over blockchain technology is still evolving in many countries, like Switzerland. Though the technology has clear benefits, it is necessary to find a way to regulate it so that the operators can fall in line with the current laws.

An official press release on March 22nd reveals that the Swiss Federal Council has commenced with a consultation period that will address the federal laws surrounding blockchain development.

With this new consultation beginning, the Federal Council has expressed the need to improve legal certainty involving blockchain applications. With this certainty, it will be easier to subsequently build regulatory framework for the Swiss industry, specifically as it applies to the financial sector. The consultation will continue until June 2019.

In mid-December last year, a report was adopted by the Federal Council regarding blockchain as it interacts with the financial sector. The report said that there are some specific adjustments to be made, but the current laws guarding finance were a good basis for the industry.

The authorities aimed to get greater legal clarity for individuals already involved with a blockchain network, and they stipulated that Anti-Money Laundering laws will be implemented on the decentralized trading platforms.

After this annoucement, the Federal Council has proposed multiple adjustments through the latest draft consultation document. One of the notable changes is regarding the implementation of a digital registration of rights, which are under the Swiss Code of Obligations.

It also separates crypto assets if bankruptcy is filed under the Consultation Period for Federal Adoptions to Blockchain Development Laws Begin with Swiss Federal Council

In another proposal from the Council, the authority believes that it would be in the best interest of the technology to create a new authorization category that specifically covers distributed ledger technology (DLT) trading facilities.

This category would mall under the market infrastructure law, helping to achieve a fully regulated financial market. The new regulations would include adapting the future Financial Institutions Act to include the licensing of trading facilities, classifying them as a securities firm.

The new amendment of the Anti-Money Laundering Ordinance will include policies regarding cryptocurrencies to keep it up to date. This week, the Federal Assembly for the Swiss government had approved the request to change the currency legislation regarding cryptocurrency, instructing the Federal Council on the changes.

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