Newsletter – October 2020
The year 2020 looks more and more like the never-ending day. We are once again under lockdown, more shock to the economy is expected, and new government support measures as well. And what will be the consequences? We can assume that interest in digital assets, which has not waned since the beginning of the year, is not about to run out of steam. This is particularly true at a time when the value propositions they carry seem so attractive: safe-haven store of value, transparency, and financial innovation. Crypto-assets seem to respond so perfectly to the present context.
For French digital asset professionals, October was marked above all by the European regulation announcement (and analysis by Adan). Also, in response to terrorist attacks in France, Economy Minister Bruno Lemaire promised strict measures to prevent the use of crypto-assets to finance terrorism. Adan and its members only regret that digital assets are still being singled out as scapegoats in troubled times when the industry is booming and would rather need public support. This is reminiscent of reports in the late ’90s on the “big bad internet” where one could find recipes for bombs and a reminder that education remains key.
Education and pedagogy was our focus this month. Among other things, we:
- published our report on the state of relations between the financial industry and the crypto-asset sector;
- hosted a webinar on MiCA and the Pilot Regime;
- trained European MPs with our German and Slovenian homologues;
- consulted with public institutions on the hardening of AML-FT;
- participated in the Fintech ACPR-AMF Forum (Banque of France and Financial Markets Authority), the Surfin’ Bitcoin conference in Biarritz, a British Parliament hearing;
- and, welcomed three new members: Caisse des Dépôts, Cryptelite and Digital Service. Welcome to them!
In November, don’t miss our webinar on the state of relations between the financial industry and the crypto-asset sector, our many planned publications, and our new website. Enough to occupy a month of lockdown that we wish you as pleasant as possible.
Président de l’Adan
Adan publishes a report presenting its survey on the banking and financial sector and the crypto-blockchain industry’s relations. The results are significant: excessively long delays, impossibility to open an account, inefficiency of the French “right to a bank account” system. This situation has persisted for nearly ten years, despite the sector’s openness and transparency, and while strictly complying with the numerous AML-FT obligations.
Following this report, Adan is organizing a webinar to present its findings. This online event will report on the difficulties in terms of the banking access and will present solutions proposed by our members to remedy the problems identified.
Date and time: Thursday, November 12 from 6 to 7 p.m.
Reports and Publications
Overview of the crypto ecosystem in the 2020 year
In this particular autumn, Adan draws up its assessment of the French crypto sector and highlights the strong and weak points of the ecosystem. This review of the French digital asset industry comes 18 months after the PACTE law was passed, and at a time when startups are faced with the COVID-19 crisis.
EU regulation risks to stifle innovation crypto innovation
In reaction to the European Commission’s proposals for the MiCA and Pilot Regime regulations aimed at implementing a European Union framework for the crypto-asset markets, Adan gave its first impressions in a press release.
Intensive work is underway at Adan in order to contribute to the European Commission’s initiative by the beginning of December, in accordance with the very tight schedule imposed by the institutions. We have already worked very closely with the French authorities to raise our initial concerns, and we are combining our thoughts with those of the Paris market via the Paris Europlace body.
The digital euro: coming soon?
In recent weeks, as its proposal to regulate the stable corners has been revealed by the European Commission, the Central Banks have been working on digital central bank currencies (CBDC):
The European Central Bank (ECB) has published its Report on a digital euro and launched a public consultation Your views on a digital euro. The objective envisaged by the ECB is to launch an experiment with the private sector and users for the issuance of a “digital euro” in mid-2021.
➡️ Read the press release
➡️ Read the report
The Bank for International Settlements (BIS, the “Central Bank of Central Banks”) and 7 Central Banks (including the ECB) have published a report on the launch conditions of a CBDC.
➡️ Read the report
Fight against money laundering and terrorist financing (AML-FT): a likely hardening of the rules in France
Pending the European proposal on the subject in early 2011, the French AML-FT framework applicable to crypto transactions (both -crypto and -fiat) is set to be strengthened. As revealed in an article published in Capital, the identification of so-called “occasional” customers would become mandatory from the first euro of the transaction, and for all customers would have to be confirmed by two precisely authorized means according to a very restricted list established in the Monetary and Financial Code. Adan is strongly mobilized on the subject to achieve a more pragmatic reinforcement in line with the real stakes of terrorist financing.
This news is in line with the publication of the report of the working group of the French Prudential Supervision and Resolution Authority (ACPR) on the application of the AML-FT rules to the crypto-assets sector.
Accounting treatment of digital assets: towards clarifications
A revised draft regulation of the French Accounting Standards Authority (ANC), which defines the accounting treatment of all token transactions and the rules applicable to VASP.
Cyber security: in search of blockchain opportunities
The General Directorate for Enterprises (Direction Générale des Entreprises) is looking for cybersecurity blockchain projects as part of the implementation of a “Cyber Campus” aimed at supporting (including financially) such initiatives.
Panel at Surfin’ Bitcoin (October 2)
During this conference organized in Biarritz, Adan presented its view of digital assets as a social, political and above all economic revolution, emphasizing our essential topics: institutionalization, innovation, private stablecoins and public equivalents, as well as regulatory news.
EU Digital Finance Package: Towards a crypto-assets regime Webinar (October 7)
Adan presented and analyzed the European Commission’s two proposals for regulations applicable to crypto-actives. The Association also expressed its concerns about the possible threats to innovation posed by these projects. Adan proposes solutions to improve the device and thus promote the competitiveness of the European crypto industry.
Speaking at the Fintech AMF-ACPR Forum: roundtable on the tokenization of finance (October 12)
Simon Polrot was invited to participate in the annual conference of the Fintech ACPR-AMF Forum and shared Adan’s vision for the future of the financial industry at the crossroads of digital asset development. In essence: “Stablecoins, security tokens and decentralized finance are the building blocks of the finance of the future.”
Mercatel webinar on “Security and Cryptography” by Azzana Consulting (October 14)
Azzana Consulting, a member of Adan, invited Simon Polrot to present The Association’s position on the evolution of the payment chain towards digital assets.
Invitation to the British Parliament – virtual event (October 20)
Faustine Fleuret spoke at the last “evidence meeting” of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Blockchain in the British Parliament. She presented the Adan and its actions, the state of the French industry, the European regulatory proposals and its recommendations for the British sector.
The video of the event and the summary report will be available soon.
Interview on the Epicenter podcast (October 22nd)
Simon Polrot was interviewed by Sébastien Couture for the Epicenter podcast. This conversation focused on the European Commission’s regulatory proposal on digital assets, detailing the risks for the crypto industry in Europe.
Training for Members of the European Parliament (October 29th)
Adan, in partnership with the German association Bundesblock, the Think Tank Blockchain Slovenia and Ledger, has prepared and delivered – for the attention of MEPs – an accelerated training course on digital assets: markets, use cases, regulatory issues.
Upcoming speaking engagement
State of the industry and presentation of Adan at Crypto-Lyon
Crypto-Lyon and iExec will welcome Adan for a presentation of the industry, The Association and our activities by Simon Polrot.
Date and time: Friday, November 6, starting at 5:00 p.m.
➡️ Register for free (online)
One more thing…
The book Droit des crypto-actifs et de la blockchain, co-written by Faustine Fleuret and published by LexisNexis, is finally published ! Enjoy your reading
This book is intended to present and shed light on the construction of the legal framework of the blockchain and crypto-actives in their great diversity and complexity (ICOs, cryptomoney, stablecoins, etc.). It seeks to provide practical answers to the legal questions that professionals (blockchain entrepreneurs, lawyers, attorneys, accountants) encounter today in a wide range of areas (regulation of new services based on digital assets, financial regulation, the fight against money laundering and terrorist financing, personal data, civil law and taxation).
➡️ Buy the book
News from our members
Arianee: Breilting watches will be supplied with an Arianee digital passport as of January 1, 2021.
BitLogiK: BitLogiK launches the guardata.app service for professional data protection (cloud backup, sharing, sync) with client-side encryption. Users retain control and confidentiality of their data: “Your keys, your data”.
Blockchain Partner: One year after the launch of a €100 million European Blockchain & AI fund, Blockchain Partner is selected by the Blockpool consortium to be part of the first promotion of its support program, and thus benefit from the support of the European Commission.
Chainalysis: Chainalysis joins the World Economic Forum’s Global Innovator Community to further promote the global adoption of cryptography.
ConsenSys: ConsenSys has been selected as a partner to Société Générale, through its subsidiary Forge, to participate in the development of the CBDC project of the Banque de France.
Coqonut: Coqonut publishes a tax guide for private individuals to understand everything about the taxation of cryptomoney.
Equisafe: Equisafe co-hosts a webinar on technological innovations for CFOs on November 4 at 11am.
iExec: The AMF approves the first token exchange offer on the Ethereum blockchain.
Kriptown: Kriptown is recognized as a French neo stock exchange by the Mars group.
Nomadic Labs: Exaion, a subsidiary of the EDF Group, becomes a “baker” on the Tezos blockchain.
Rockside: Farewell to the transactions blocked on Ethereum: here is the promise of the application for DeFi Degens “Tongue Wallet”, held by the Rockside relay.
Scorechain: Scorechain publishes the complete guide to implement a risk-based approach, in compliance with the red flags indicators from the latest FATF-GAFI directive on virtual assets.
SheeldMarket: SheeldMarket is the third French company to obtain PSAN records for key retention and the purchase and sale of digital assets against legal tender.
Smartchain: SmartChain has entered into a strategic partnership and an equity stake in Xkey, a startup specializing in threshold signatures for custody (TSS) to strengthen our R&D pole on MPC topics: Secure Multiparty Computation.
Waltio: Waltio and Kryll are working together to enable users of the French trading platform to manage their tax affairs with complete peace of mind.
We are pleased to welcome to Adan 3 new members:
Caisse des Dépôts et des Consignations: we don’t present it anymore. It is as part of its public interest missions and its LaBChain initiative that the Caisse is joining us as an associate member. We will work together on the competitiveness of the French ecosystem and the problems it faces.
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