The path to standardizing and upgrading cryptocurrency regulation across the globe has seen progress in recent years, as detailed in the recent panel discussion “Crypto Regulation in Europe: The Tipping Point” held during the Money20/20 event today.
The panel was spearheaded by key industry experts, including Gillian Lynch, CEO of Europe at Gemini, and Nick Cowan, CEO of the Gibraltar Stock Exchange. The experts highlighted the inevitable intersection of traditional banking institutions and digital asset firms, suggesting a “wave three of crypto adoption” driven by banks’ entrance into the market.
Gemini’s Managing Director for Europe, Julian Sawyer, emphasized the need for an overhaul of current regulatory guidelines, advocating for an approach that standardizes regulations across all jurisdictions. He said that it’s crucial to implement new regulations as advancements in crypto technology make them necessary, maintaining the fairness and effectiveness of oversight.
“Regulations should be the same no matter where they are being applied for,” said Sawyer. This sentiment reflects Gemini’s approach to regulation. The company believes in seeking permission before taking action, a strategy that has at times limited its growth.
However, as new regulations begin to materialize across jurisdictions, the firm’s early compliance may prove advantageous.
The cryptocurrency landscape in Europe is changing, as evidenced by the increasing engagement of banks with digital asset firms. This is a phenomenon that Nick Cowan, CEO of Gibraltar Stock Exchange, attributed to recent regulation in the industry, which has resulted in changing perceptions.
Cowan, who also serves on the government of Gibraltar’s token regulation working group, said that the demand from customers for banks to provide access to cryptocurrencies would lead to further market transformation.
A former banker, Sawyer became intrigued by the potential of cryptocurrency and blockchain technology in the aftermath of the financial crisis, seeing opportunities for faster payments and other advancements in the financial world.
Before joining Gemini, Sawyer considered several other cryptocurrency firms but said choosing Gemini was a “no brainer” due to the company’s regulatory approach and strong reputation.
The discussion on crypto regulation in Europe paints a picture of an industry in the process of transformation, as it learns to coexist with traditional banking institutions and adapts to evolving regulations. The ongoing conversation about standardizing these regulations is critical for the future of crypto, ensuring that the industry remains secure, accessible, and fair for all participants.