Answer to Written Question: Impact of cryptocurrencies on money laundering and financial stability

(Source: European Parliament)



Answer given by Ms McGuinness

on behalf of the European Commission


In September 2020, the Commission adopted a proposal for a Regulation for Markets in Crypto-assets[1] (MiCA).

The EU has taken measures to mitigate money laundering and terrorist financing risks posed by crypto-assets, by including both crypto-assets to fiat exchanges and custodian wallets in the 5th anti-money laundering (AML) framework.

MiCA, as proposed by the Commission, contains several safeguards for the reserve assets underpinning asset-referenced tokens, including a requirement for issuers to establish and maintain detailed policies, procedures and contractual arrangements governing the management and custody of reserve assets. As part of the authorisation process, issuers would be obliged to disclose to competent authorities details of their custody arrangements for reserve assets. MiCA would also require issuers to commission an independent audit of their reserve assets every six months and publish the outcome of this audit.

To safeguard financial stability, monetary policy transmission and monetary sovereignty, MiCA would require competent authorities to refuse to authorise any issuer of asset-referenced tokens whose business model could threaten any of these three interests.  

The Commission looks forward to adoption of the proposals by the European Parliament and the Council of Ministers in order to put these safeguards into practice.

[1] Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on Markets in Crypto-assets, and amending Directive (EU) 2019/1937 – COM/2020/593 final.

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