By Marc Taverner, Executive Director of INATBA
At the end of September, the European Commission introduced a far-reaching Digital Finance package with several legislative proposals regarding crypto-assets. The goal of this package was to build a “competitive EU financial sector that gives consumers access to innovative financial products, while ensuring consumer protection and financial stability.” It does this mainly through its proposed regulation on Markets in Crypto Assets (known as MiCA).
Overall, this regulation has the capacity to re-establish Europe’s leadership in crypto-asset regulation. While not perfect, the MiCA legislature offers several strong points that have the potential to transform European blockchain development. With its positive qualities, it is also imperative to note that the MiCA legislation was primarily drafted and published by stakeholders at a European governmental level – not by the ecosystem. Further, because the EU process which MiCA now follows is both technical and political, it is imperative that industry insights are provided at every stage. Otherwise there is a risk that this legislation may not necessarily be representative of the ecosystem’s insights and interests.
This is where INATBA steps in. We are catalyzing stakeholders from across the EU and several sectors to bring industry evidence to the European Commission and Parliament so that valuable opportunities for innovation are not squandered. Europe has the resources and position to be a global leader in blockchain, and these MiCA regulations have the potential to alter the way blockchain functions in Europe and on an international level for years to come. We therefore find it necessary to bring as much data and insight as possible to address these regulations and help improve them to build a stronger and more versatile European market.
It is imperative that stakeholders in both the European and international blockchain ecosystems take the time to understand these regulations and the very real implications they have on current and future activities in this area. This is why we are creating our new INATBA task force, dedicated to evaluating, discussing, and providing feedback on the proposed MiCA regulations.
This MiCA task force is now convening these voices to critically evaluate the MiCA regulations, including what implementation would mean for individuals, projects, companies and governments. To achieve a representative forum and basis for discussion, INATBA is committed to including all interested trade organisations, private sector companies, and civil society organisations in our MiCA task force.
The task force will first work to identify areas of the legislation that fit these criteria and work to reconceptualise impossible or onerous regulations into understandable and implementable guidelines, both through surveys of INATBA members as well as the broader blockchain ecosystem.
The task force will then gather and analyse these evaluations to create a comprehensive set of community guidelines for presentation to government stakeholders, focusing on the European Commission, European Parliament, and 27 EU member states.
INATBA is in a unique and advantageous position to present these guidelines. One of our main objectives is to maintain a permanent dialogue with public regulators and policymakers, contributing to open and transparent governance regarding blockchain-related areas. This relationship means that relevant government bodies are already aware of our role as a global convener within the blockchain ecosystem. Governmental awareness positions INATBA at the forefront of the dialogue between legislators and the general public, ensuring that the community guidelines developed by task force participants will be received by stakeholders that have the power to translate the task force guidelines into real change.
MiCA will undoubtedly transform the development of the blockchain ecosystem across the world. Our task force’s goal is to make the industry’s voices heard in these regulations, ultimately working to guarantee a positive and representative EU transformation that protects the future of crypto-assets while promoting further development and innovation.
You can join the task force and learn more by at this link: https://inatba.org/mica-task-force/