The lack of cryptocurrency regulation is often considered to be holding back the industry. European officials, while aware of cryptocurrency, show no inclination to regulate this industry as of right now. In fact, the European Union will not explore regulatory guidelines for Bitcoins and altcoins anytime soon. A cautious and careful approach seems to be their preference.
European Union and Cryptocurrency
Europe has always been an interesting region for cryptocurrencies. Some countries effectively tax cryptocurrency as of right now, whereas other regions ignore this industry for all intents and purposes. Despite some warnings and remarks by individual government agencies, no steps toward regulating Bitcoin are undertaken at this time. That situation will, according to sources to the matter, not change for the foreseeable future.
A recent gathering of European finance ministers has not yielded any significant results. The general consensus is how regulating this nascent industry should be done slowly and deliberately, rather than rushing decisions. For now, the European authorities will investigate and analyze their markets prior to drawing any conclusions. A wait-and-see approach may not be such a bad idea, all things considered.
Considering how some countries rashly banned cryptocurrency trading, this wait-and-see attitude by the EU seems a positive sign. If there was a plan to ban cryptocurrency activities, the decision would have been finalized by now. Instead, the approach seems to favor a potential licensing system for exchanges and introducing through KYC and AML guidelines. No final decisions have been made in either regard as of yet.
This recent discussion in Vienna was merely intended to ensure everyone is aware of the cryptocurrency industry. Moreover, policymakers need to be made comfortable with the task ahead. There are many different aspects pertaining to cryptocurrency which policymakers will need to be aware of. Immediate action may not be on the horizon, but there will be some regulatory draft eventually.
It is good to see the European Union taking small steps toward legitimizing Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Although there is still a lot of work to be done prior to making any meaningful impact, the calculated approach to this industry seems to hint at future positive developments. Whether or not it will proper Europe to the next level in terms of cryptocurrency-related activity, is a different matter altogether.