Poland: Laws Related to Token Sales, Blockchain, and Digital Proof

In Poland, there are no specific regulations defining cryptocurrency markets and a lot of questions still remain unanswered. All operations done with bitcoin are considered to be bartered, rather than standard buy-sell transactions, so ‘paying’ with it requires making a legal contract. Because of this, at this point, it seems that according to the Polish law, cryptocurrencies in fact function as property, not currency. (Source).

Poland has had rather harsh regulations on cryptocurrencies at the time of writing, May 2018. A major cryptocurrency exchange, Bitbay, has decided to move from Poland to Malta as Polish banks decided to no longer cooperate with the company. (Source). At the beginning of April 2018, Poland announced a new tax on income derived from all cryptocurrency trading, taxing all as personal income (18-32%) regardless of whether there was gain or loss during the transactions. This was not received well by the community in Poland and incited protests. Poland is since reviewing its crypto regulations and wants to implement improved regulation by June 15, 2018. (Source).

In January 2018, Poland passed Anti Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) laws regarding cryptocurrencies. While the E.U. regulations only cover crypto-to-fiat and fiat-to-crypto exchange, the Polish proposal would also apply to all crypto-to-crypto exchange. Any trading on an token exchange or any ICO (involving trading ETH for a new token) can be considered a crypto-to-crypto exchange and thus could be under the new AML/CFT regulation. This law requires platforms to carry out due diligence on customers and report suspicious transactions. Uncertainties over the tax and regulatory environments have halted the growth of ICOs in Poland, and this law makes the situation worse. (Source).

Regulation of cryptocurrencies in Poland and E.U. is evolving at the time of writing. There were very few regulations on blockchains in the E.U. in early 2018, but on April 20, 2018 the E.U. Parliament just voted that crypto exchanges had to be registered and have to comply with AML/CTF due-diligence procedures. The Polish laws noted above are also only a few months old since Jan 2018, and they may change rapidly. It’s important to keep up-to-date with the most recent legislation.


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