The countries of the European Union hold a patchwork of individual attitudes towards cryptocurrency regulation, but all of them also fall under the jurisdiction of the EU Commission. For EU regulations, please visit EU Laws Related to Token Sales, Blockchain, and Digital Proof.
Sweden is currently in the midst of R&D on it’s own national coin, e-Krona.
The Swedish regulatory authority finansinspektionen (FI) controls the regulation around ICO’s and cryptocurrency. Presently unregulated, initiatives are underway in the EU to have cryptocurrency regulations in place by 2020.
As ICOs and Token Sales are currently not specifically regulated in any form in Sweden, they are definitely not specifically prohibited. ICOs and Token Sales are therefore be regarded as allowed. Yet although there is no explicit ban on financial companies raising money through ICO’s, no Swedish company has attempted to do so yet.
Depending on how an ICO or Token Sale is structured the coins or tokens may perhaps qualify as financial instruments, in which case the ICO or Token Sale may be regarded as a regulated investment activity. Informal statements from Sweden suggest that virtual currencies are not currencies, but instead will be treated as assets. This must be analysed on a case by case basis. The FI has taken the stance that ICO’s are investment products that may be traded.
Sweden has also issued a warning about the risks associated with cryptocurrencies and the ICO market. The risks identified are e.g. that since most ICOs are unregulated there are no guarantees that the token or crypto currency issued actually confer any rights to the holder against the issuer, that there is no guaranteed market available for the issued asset to be traded on, that information regarding the asset may be misleading or not provided to all investors simultaneously, and that there is a significant risk for fraud.
Along with this general warning, the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has further just recently issued two statements or alerts regarding ICOs, one directed towards investors and one towards firms involved in ICOs. These two statements are available here.
In the event any specific regulation is enacted, the responsible agency will be the Swedish Financial Supervisory Authority. This agency will also oversee and have under supervision any ICO or Token Sale which may become regarded as a regulated investment activity.
There are no official blockchain regulation documents on offer. However, it appears as though blockchain is already being integrated into several industries in Sweden, especially in land-registry and property deals.
The country’s official land registration authority, Lantmäteriet, is looking at how blockchain’s promise of “digital trust” could by applied to property transactions.
The authority partnered with banks and telecom company Telia to create “smart contracts” on a blockchain that allow buyers and sellers to use digital signatures to sign off on a property sale.
Sweden’s land-ownership authority, the Lantmäteriet, is soon expected to conduct their first Blockchain technology property transaction after two years of testing, the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reported Wendesday, March 7.
There are no official blockchain regulation documents on offer.
In January 2018 the EU came out with new directives on cryptocurrencies, asserting that “gaps still exist in the oversight of the many financial means used by terrorists, from cash and trade in cultural artefacts to virtual currencies and anonymous prepaid cards. This proposal seeks to address those gaps while avoiding unnecessary obstacles to the functioning of payments and financial markets for ordinary, law-abiding citizens and businesses, so balancing the need to increase security with the need to protect fundamental rights, including data protection, and economic freedoms.” Mostly focused on ending anonymity among the crypto community, and preventing nefarious individuals from buying, funding, or selling orgs or resources. It does include the sharing of company and individual information with public entities at times, and affects exchanges and wallets.
The European Parliament saw that the majority agreed to demand stricter regulation of cryptocurrencies, since an agreement with the European Council proposing closer cryptocurrency rules to avoid their abuse in money laundering and financing of the cryptocurrency. terrorism found support from Parliament.
The Blockchain partnership declaration was launched at the Digital Day 2018 on April 10, 2018, and was signed by twenty-two Member States: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Latvia, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, UK.
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