At the end of February, the Riigikogu passed the Money Laundering Prevention Act Amendment Act. In co-operation with the officials of the Ministry of Finance and the members of the Finance Committee of the Riigikogu, a very radical bill was initially succeeded in making it possible to develop the cryptotechnology sector. Nevertheless, careful consideration needs to be given to how laws that have been changing in recent years can be put into practice and whether there are more modern solutions to the demands that seemed beautiful on paper.
“We are cautiously satisfied with cryptotechnology and virtual currency companies that the dialogue between the Estonian high-tech cryptocommunity and policy makers has become more equal, honest and substantive, and that despite urgency They are not satisfied until the end, but which will allow for legal clarity and at the same time continue the rapid development of the innovative sector, ”said Raido Saar, CEO of the Estonian Cryptocurrency Association.
Prior to the adoption of the bill, the legislator and the government managed to agree on the waiver of the volume-based supervision fee as well as several other unjustified restrictions.
“Thanks to the supported amendments, the detrimental effect of the law on the virtual currency sector was probably reduced by millions of euros. In addition to the waiver of the supervisory fee based on the volume of payments, equity requirements decreased compared to the original plan, the scope of companies affected by the draft was narrowed, the provision on restricting acquisitions
However, much work remains to be done and there are questions about the applicability of the new requirements. Estonia, as a country committed to innovative public services and open government, should also work harder to apply new technologies to supervisory activities, rather than setting robust and uniform requirements.
“Everyone – absolutely everyone – acknowledged that the two weeks between the adoption and entry into force of the draft is a completely unreasonable approach to regulating one sector. We understood that this was related to the international assessment of Estonia’s anti-money laundering measures, but nevertheless all parties should acknowledge that such legislation is, to put it mildly, exceptional. Now and now we are working on the same issue again – this time with the Bill on Mutual Funding and Other Investment Instruments and Virtual Currencies, which re-establishes a comprehensive legal framework for virtual currency service providers and is likely to change the standards just adopted, bring companies under supervision and much more. And at the same time, the European Commission and the European Parliament are debating a package of new digital financial services with the Member States, which will change the rules adopted in Estonia – undoubtedly making them more lenient. This marathon of adopting, changing and canceling new requirements puts a lot of pressure on entrepreneurs, and the Cryptographic Money Union definitely intends to stand up for innovation here with its supporters, ”Saar concluded.
The aim of the Estonian Cryptographic Association is to unite companies related to virtual currencies or blockchain technology in solving sectoral problems and to represent members as a professional association in the development of legal regulations in the field and to provide the necessary input to government agencies.