Recent comments made by Australia’s assistant treasurer about the topic have prompted cryptocurrency executives from Australia to warn against putting all digital assets in the same category as financial products. In light of recent regulatory developments, they say that this is crucial.
Interview with the Sydney Morning Herald published January 22, 2018. Stephen Jones, Assistant Treasurer, Minister for Financial Services, provided an overview of current cryptocurrency legislation in the country.
An executive from a cryptocurrency exchange said that the government is on track with its token mapping exercise, which it was carrying out this year in order to determine which crypto assets need to be regulated. He said that a consultation process was being planned with the industry. Jones said that he wasn’t interested in creating new laws for something that functions primarily as an investment product. I don’t want any assumptions made about the outcome of the feedback gathering process that we will undertake.
But I start with the assumption that if something walks and quacks like ducks, and looks like ducks, it should be treated as if it were one.
“Other currencies, tokens, are basically being used as a form of value storage in order for investors and financial speculation.” They should be treated in the same way as financial instruments.
According to the Sydney Morning Herald (SMH), both the Australian Securities and Investments Commissions (ASIC) and Commonwealth Bank (one of Australia’s “Big 4” banks, support cryptocurrencies being regulated as financial products. ASIC is Australia’s financial regulator. The four largest banks in Australia are Commonwealth Bank and National Australia Bank. Players in the cryptocurrency industry caution against taking a blanket approach towards cryptocurrencies and assets.
The trick to protecting consumers is not to regulate away well-run domestic assets businesses and force people to use offshore markets subject to less stringent checks and balances.” closing. Closes the loop. Holger Arian, Chief Executive Officer of Holger’s company that offers cryptocurrency on-ramps expressed concern that too much regulation might “seriously damage” Australia’s pioneering role in the cryptocurrency market.
Caroline Bowler, CEO at BTCMarkets, says that regulation should not be “overly prescriptive”. Our digital economy could be left behind, which could impact our ability to compete internationally.
Australian lawmakers and their international colleagues felt a greater urgency to act in the wake of November’s FTX disaster. The Australian financial authorities have yet to publicly formulate their regulatory framework.
Jones said that failure of FTX “puts into question” the need to regulate cryptocurrency.
Fred Schebesta, an Australian entrepreneur, investor and entrepreneur in the cryptocurrency industry, warned in September that speeding up the mapping of tokens could prove to be dangerous for the company.
It is not easy to understand the complexities of token mapping, which is why it is crucial for Australia’s “nascent” cryptocurrency economy to “align itself with other main markets and their legislative framework,” he said.
Blockchain Australia, a cryptocurrency advocacy organization, shared the sentiment. They claimed that all crypto assets should be considered financial products. This would negatively impact the innovation and investment in the cryptocurrency sector, and could lead to the loss or displacement of employees.