Treasury Committee in UK Says Crypto Market’s “Wild West” Landscape Needs Attention
UK Treasury Committee Wants The ‘Wild West Situation’ In Crypto Ecosystem To End
Bitcoin and other digital currencies are a “Wild West industry” and need to be monitored to protect investors, insists the UK Treasury Committee.
The committee of Members of Parliament (MPs) in the House of Commons has reportedly called for a resolution to certain issues encompassing digital currency such as listing price volatility, poor consumer protection, the risk of hacker attacks, and money laundering. the Committee also urged the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to oversee cryptocurrencies, though presently the FCA is not legally enabled to regulate either issuer of digital assets or cryptocurrency exchanges.
Nicky Morgan, the chair of the Treasury Committee, is quoted saying that,
“It's unsustainable for the government and regulators to bumble along issuing feeble warnings to potential investors, yet refrain from acting.” Morgan added that, “Regulation should at least address the problem of consumer protection and anti-money laundering (AML).”
As the government and regulators decide whether the current Wild West situation is allowed to continue, or whether they are going to introduce regulation, consumers remain unprotected, said the Treasury Committee.
CryptoUK, which was set up in February as a self-regulatory body for the crypto-currency industry, said it welcomed the Treasury Committee's recommendations. Iqbal Gandham, who chairs it, said:
“Self-regulation by the industry was always intended to be a starting point – this must now be matched by government action.”
“Regulatory oversight is essential to ensuring consumer safety, guarding against malpractice and providing much-needed clarity to an industry that is fast maturing. It is therefore pleasing that the committee has endorsed our suggestion on how this can be delivered, by bringing responsibility within the FCA's perimeter of oversight.”
In essence, CryptoUK says that the regulations should focus on trading platforms and brokers, rather than the assets themselves.