The French official Bruno Le Maire, the country's Minister of Economy and Finance, asked the former Vice-Governor of the Banque de France, Jean-Pierre Landau, in January to set out political strategies for France to address the issue of cryptocurrency regulation.
Landau, for his part, recently completed the order. He told the European Community that a “Euro BitLicense” was possible. This would be a potential regulatory model and might require experimental regulation, at least in France.
The French Experimental Regulation In Cryptocurrencies
In January, when Minister Le Maire entrusted Landau with the mission of listing the regulatory possibilities that France might have towards the incipient cryptoeconomy, the Minister requested that to provide information on the evolution of the regulations to better control development and prevent the use for purposes of tax evasion, money laundering or financing of criminal and terrorist activities.
The Landau report, dated 4 July, is entitled “Les crypto-monnaies” (The cryptocurrencies). It has about 100 pages. And two of the most important conclusions are the following:
- Landau's citation of New York State BitLicense crypto-regulation.
- Carry out possible experimental regulation at the national level to promote, and not collide with, domestic crypto economy.
For example, on page 58 of the report, BitLicense is cited as a regulatory model that could be considered a precedent:
“Many market places already regulate the cryptocurrency exchanges on the basis of accreditation and special rules. This is in particular the case of BitLicense in the jurisdiction of New York. The Financial Services Department of the State of New York (NYDFS) has so far granted only five BitLicenses, two of which were granted to Ripple and the Gemini platform. These have publicly emphasized the benefits of such a licensing-based regulation, which presents the double advantage of facilitating the opening and maintaining of a business relationship with banks and offering more broad guarantees to institutional investors wishing to carry out transactions in crypto-currencies.”
As such, this and much more within the document proposes that a BitLicense-style system could help bring the use of cryptocurrency into the mainstream of finance in France. Some of the existing European Union laws that could suffocate domestic cryptoeconomy if not addressed are explored later in the text.
Jean-Pierre Landau further argued that experimental regulation at the federal level could create a regulatory sandbox that would prevent cryptos companies from fleeing France. Therefore, the regulation of cryptocurrencies exchanges could, in the short term, be subject to experimental regulation at the national level.
What's Left For It To Come Into Force?
Landau even shared elements of his latest report in a new roundtable on Digital Financial Assets of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). The official also shared some thoughts on his report to the French Minister, which will be published shortly.
An evolution of thought has clearly taken place. The new proposals of the French economic cabinet are no longer at all similar to what they first became within the European Union with the issue of cryptocurrencies and the rejection of crypto money.
We can think of the progress that cryptocurrencies have made. Practically every day, it feels more like they are here to stay. The European Union is increasingly attracted to the fact that it has revolutionized cross-border payments. And all this at a time when the Euro and the EU figure seem to have stagnated in recent years compared to the bullish US economy.
Like all countries and their governments, France is closely observing the best way to approach cryptocurrencies and has now looked to BitLicense as a potential model. BitLicense is certainly controversial, at least in the United States. However, the fact that France has looked into it suggests that the nation's leadership is interested in bringing the use of cryptography to its advantage.