G20 calls for regulating crypto with FATF standards

02 Dec, 2018
by Alberto Arnaldo
G20 calls for regulating crypto with FATF standards

A joint declaration signed in Buenos Aires on Saturday by all G20 nations admitted that the multilateral trade system is not reaching its objectives. While calling for reform inside the World Trade Organization, it mentioned cryptocurrencies on a slightly more positive tone than that of previous declarations from the group.

According to the 25th point of the Leader’s declaration entitled ‘Building consensus for fair and sustainable development’, the G20 ‘will regulate crypto-assets for anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism in line with FATF standards and we will consider other responses as needed’.

FATF stands for Financial Action Task Force, an OECD organization and policy making body created by the G7 in the late 80’s to combat money laundering, with competences extended to include terrorism financing since 2001. They usually work by setting up standards and promoting their implementation.

It appears as if their participation was requested by India, one of the countries with the toughest regulation on crypto. According to an article in local media The Hans India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s 9 points agenda presented to the G20 summit on Friday included calling for FATF to help on tracking down fugitive economic offenders. Reactions on Reddit showed a lack of trust in FATF:

However, regulations do not seem to be the only concern of the G20. The previous part mentioning crypto-assets regulation was immediately preceded the following two sentences, which, if referred as well to crypto, would signal an important swift in G20’s views about the sector:

We look forward to continued progress on achieving resilient non-bank financial intermediation. We will step up efforts to ensure that the potential benefits of technology in the financial sector can be realized while risks are mitigated’.

Further insights about the organism’s regulatory intentions can be extracted from the 26th point of the conclusions:

We will continue to work together to seek a consensus-based solution to address the impacts of the digitalization of the economy on the international tax system with an update in 2019 and a final report by 2020’.

It is unclear if the G20 will go forward with the measures reported on their declaration, as future policy changes might happen. However, protests against the summit remain a constant. Just like last year in Hamburg, thousands marched in Buenos Aires last Friday, out of the 12-square-kilometer cordoned area around the convention in a city taken by 25,000 police officers.

Crypto advocates on Twitter were mostly welcoming towards the remarks:

Read more: "There needs to be normalization at the G20 level": Circle CEO on crypto regulation

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