Spanish authorities are to immediately prepare a registry of cryptocurrency exchanges and custody providers so to ensure compliance with legal requirements and properly address transparency and terrorism financing issues that are becoming prevalent worldwide. The registry was approved last year as specified by the Prevention of Money Laundering and Financing of Terrorism Law. And in a process that began in April, authorities have given all service providers involved until October to register.
Spain to Create Registry for Virtual Asset Provider
As stipulated by Spanish law, the Bank of Spain must come up with the criteria with which to start registering cryptocurrency exchanges and other custody providers. The virtual asset service providers must now register with the institution to effectively implement measures to counter money laundering and terrorist financing. All this is in line with the mandate provided by the Prevention of Money Laundering and Financing of Terrorism Law that was approved last year.
The period allowed by law for these providers to register began in April and will end by October. After that, cryptocurrency service providers will have a second chance to register, which will end in January 2022. According to the law, the purpose of the registry is to provide full profile information about true cryptocurrency owners, improve the transparency of the crypto business, and ultimately prevent terrorism.
All through the year, Spain has been busy regulating cryptocurrency and having a series of interactions, culminating in approving a series of laws that gives them more control on crypto and fiat holdings. Like the “anti-fraud law” which was passed on July 7, it states that all Spanish citizens must disclose their cryptocurrency ownership for assets both inside the country, and offshore. The law also establishes that custody providers must provide full information about their customers and what they hold.
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In the antifraud law, failure to comply attracts somewhat very harsh penalties. Customer data will be made available to all countries in the European Union, as well. According to a Spanish financial lawyer, Alejandro de la Cruz, the lengthy processes involved in regulation compliance might affect the growth of cryptocurrency adoption in the region.
However, a percentage of the Spanish congress seems to be want to make things a bit easier for the citizens considering the importance that cryptocurrencies can have in the lives of citizens. A new draft law has been introduced earlier this month, and the law is seeking to modernize the Spanish legal structure, by allowing Spanish citizens to pay their mortgages with cryptocurrency.