French Minister of Economy and Finance, Mr. Bruno Le Maire, has recently expressed his wishes for other EU member states to adopt cryptocurrency and blockchain regulation, which is in line with France’s new approach to cryptoassets under their pending PACTE bill.
Le Maire recently stated in an address at the Blockchain Summit in Paris, the first event of its kind to be hosted in the nation’s capital, that he will be urging his peers in the EU to “set up a single regulatory framework on cryptoassets, inspired by the French experience.” Le Maire further remarked that it was his firm belief that France’s latest cryptocurrency draft bill, named the Action Plan for Business Growth and Transformation (PACTE), was the most comprehensive and formally specified blockchain regulation in Europe to date, adding “Our model is the right one”.
Elaborating further on France’s leading role in cryptoasset regulation, Le Maire said in his address, that the event was not only a demonstration of France’s support for crypto technology, but likewise that the state was willing to make France a reference for blockchain regulation and innovation throughout the whole of the European Union. Likewise, he went on to state that he personally believes in the potential of blockchain technology as a disruptive force in current financial systems.
The bill, among the first of its kind to be adopted in Europe, will facilitate companies who issue or trade cryptoassets to apply for a voluntary certification, known as a visa regime. This visa will allow blockchain companies to operate with a degree of legal certainty and pass these assurances on to their customers. Additionally, as visa holders will be registered with the French government, it will allow legitimate projects to attract interest from institutional investors.
To date, the European Union has failed to formalize a specific or defined set of regulation for cryptoassets, with each member state issuing significantly different guidance for the blockchain industry. Unlike other traditional financial instruments, such as collective investment schemes which are provisioned under pan-European laws and initiatives; or EU-wide initiatives for banking and financial services by proxy of the EU single market, there is currently no congruent pan-European legislation covering cryptoassets.
Therefore, if Le Maire succeeds in extrapolating out French PACTE regulation to other EU member states, France could look to become the de facto leader in future decision making for cryptoasset regulation.
Le Maire also remarked that the French government believe blockchain is an essential technology for the 21st century and could be a strong tool for the French economy, adding that regulatory clarity for blockchain companies in France is essential if the nation is to compete with the technological giants of America or China.
To conclude, Le Maire said he is convinced that France can become the pre-eminent authority on blockchain in the whole of Europe, and eventually become one of the worlds leading jurisdictions for blockchain companies.