Switzerland Supports Cryptocurrencies by Easing Regulations
July 20, 2018 3:38 pm
Switzerland was once hailed as “Crypto Nation”. The country initially enforced a stricter regulatory framework. The Government is planning to capitalize on the popularity of cryptocurrency platforms by encouraging banks to accept accounts from cryptocurrency companies.
Based on the ICO guidelines published in February 2018, Switzerland is allocating its cryptocurrency business to off-shore rivals such as the Cayman Islands, the British Virgin Islands, Liechtenstein, and Gibraltar.
The regulations define three types of tokens (payment, utility, and asset). It also requires anti-money laundering compliance for tokens that are used for payments.
Due to the previous restrictions, a large number of cryptocurrency entrepreneurs lost their interest in doing business in Switzerland. The Government is concerned that investors and entrepreneurs might choose other countries if the banking system does not revise its policies.
The cryptocurrency ecosystem has also approached the Swiss National Bank (SNB) for simplifying the process of opening new bank accounts.
The Zuercher Kantonal Bank (ZKB) closed 20 accounts that dealt in virtual currencies last year.
A roundtable discussion was held between the finance ministry, the central bank, FINMA and Swiss Bankers Association back in May 2018. A list of checks and conditions have been put in place that will allow cryptocurrency firms to do business while overcoming the concerns of ICO fraud or money laundering.