France to ask for a G20 Bitcoin Regulation DiscussionDecember 19, 2017
It appears that France is ready to take is the generally progressive stance on digital currency from a domestic setting to the world stage. This comes in the form of the news that the country’s finance minister is seeking a way to include a discussion about BTC regulation at the upcoming G20 summit taking place in 2018.
The news has been broken by Reuters and so far it has not been disputed. While it might not get too much mainstream media traction, outside of the obligatory “digital currencies are becoming important”, the news shows an interesting trend that the French are planning to take to their G20 partners.
Like so many times before, this is a double-edged sword for the community of the digital currency users and developers. Also, like it happens regularly, the very seed of any potential debate is already tainted by problems in the way the dialogue is being positioned. Here are the key facts about the news and an analysis of what could come of it for the cryptocurrency domain.
Bruno Le Maire Request
The news started with the finance minister of France, Bruno Le Maire stating in a news interview that he will request from Argentina to place bitcoin regulation on the agenda of the G20 meeting. The meeting is taking place in April 2018 and the nation is currently holding the presidency of the organization.
He was quoted as saying that he will propose to the G20 president nation that the panel collectively discusses the issue of bitcoin. Mainly the discussion should focus on the ways this digital currency could be regulated. According to Le Maire, there is plenty of evidence that the cryptocurrency holds a lot of risks when it comes to speculation.
Because of this, the G20 nations should try to examine the problem and see how they can protect their consumers. The clearest way of doing the same would be to regulate bitcoin in some shape or form. However, there are no clear signs from the rest of the G20 members that there will even be a discussion like this, or what their position on this issue could be.
The April Meeting
Right now, no one can tell with certainty how the meeting will be defined or where the discussion will steer it. Previously, the nations that make up the G20 have been able to discuss this topic using the FSB or the Financial Stability Board. The same segment of the organization has studied the technology of blockchain and existing digital currencies since 2016.
However, the scope of their research and the results they might have generated have never been published. Like all modern technology that is, in the lack of a better term, emergent in its use, like for example eSports, gauging blockchain is difficult in this regard.
This is why FSB would have difficulty saying either that bitcoin is safe or that it is completely hazardous to their users or potential new investors. This is why the board has the continuity for holding a debate on the issue, but little to no chance to attain some direct suggestions on the regulation of bitcoin across the G20 block.
Today, BTC is used for online betting, purchases, investment and so much more, which is why any regulation would not come easy. But this is not stopping Le Marie.
The French Stance
According to many analysts working in the blockchain and digital currency domain, the stance of Le Marie is not at all surprising. His native country has had what can be described as a proactive stance on the issue of this technology.
Earlier in December, the French government allowed for new rules to come into place regarding blockchain tech that is being applied for monetary purposes. These rules will allow for unregistered securities to be actively traded using blockchains.
Also, the financial regulators in the country have their own initiative related to ICO. This project is called UNICORN and it began laying the groundwork for the sales of tokens that would be overseen by the regulators. This is a very impressive move because it offers a chance for the economy to utilize this new tool while it clamps down on anyone who would want to manipulate or deceive the public using the same method.
In many other countries in the world, ICOs became somewhat of a regulatory pitfall where some countries, like China, for example, decided to use a complete ban on all of them. At this point, there are not as many ICOs in France, but the regulators are thinking ahead.
As recent history showed, this is a good move for anyone who wants to be successful in the blockchain domain. The regulatory decisions made by the French government would allow for this to be avoided by having a proactive approach.
France is one of the leading economies in the EU and also in the entire world. Today, it provides a huge range of goods and services, but most of them do not have the ever-present feel to them like those coming from the US (global IT services like social media) or China (consumer goods).
However, like most countries with a stable continuity of governments spanning almost two centuries (not counting world wars) it has the means and the infrastructure to support big changes.
This is why it has a solid potential for digital currency investment and development. Unlike other big macroeconomic changes, the cryptocurrency domain would not impact the social fabric of the country in any shape or form.
Instead, it would just allow for investments to pour into the nation and allow for many companies to choose it as their base of operation outside of North America and the Far East. All the while, the country regulators would be able to make sure that all of these are covered by protective measures. A setup like this would not provide the country with an enormous and rapid influx of funds, but it would give it a competitive edge in Europe for sure when it comes to the cryptocurrency market.