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Digital Currency and Blockchain Weekly Round-Up – November 8th, 2019

Fri, 08 Nov 2019, 12:07 pm UTC

European Union to create encompassing law for Libra, other stablecoins
Recent reports suggested that the European Union may be looking to create its own central bank digital currency (CBDC). But it appears that the union isn’t preparing for such a thing as it just clarified that the recent draft penned by the Finnish EU presidency is geared towards the regulation of stablecoins. The regulators are trying to create a regulatory framework that would encompass existing stablecoins and its other kin that will be surfacing in the future.

U.K. releases extensive crypto tax guidelines; Rules subject to changes depending on market evolution
Last year, the United Kingdom’s tax agency promised it will provide extensive guidelines for the nascent crypto industry to offer clarity for businesses and corporations dealing with this particular market. Now, Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has released the said guidelines for cryptoasset exchange tokens. The explains how crypto businesses should pay for corporate tax, capital gains tax, income tax, national insurance contributions, stamp taxes or VAT.

FCA issues key instructions for crypto businesses ahead of EU’s 5AMLD deadline
UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has published key information for cryptoasset-related businesses ahead of the implementation of the European Union’s Fifth Money Laundering Directive (5AMLD) in early 2020, Finextra reported. “From 10 January 2020, we will be the anti-money laundering and counter terrorist financing (AML/CTF) supervisor of UK cryptoasset businesses under the Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017, as amended (MLRs),” it said.

People’s Bank of China, Shanghai regulators highlight blockchain’s importance in shipping, financial industry
The People’s Bank of China (PBoC) and the Shanghai commerce commission have just released a statement that supports the development of blockchain technology in the country. The statement highlighted blockchain’s importance in solving problems regarding information asymmetry in trade finance. It also underscores blockchain’s role in addressing the proof of trade authenticity, a problem that the technology can solve through its transparent nature and immutable ledger.

Hong Kong partners with China, Thailand to explore AI, DLT, CBDC initiatives
The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) launched a five-day program yesterday, Nov. 6, gathering thousands of people in a bid to push the financial industry forward. Among the projects that have been mentioned is a Proof-of-Concept (PoC) trial that will be connecting the eTradeConnect and the People’s Bank of China Trade Finance Platform. Hong Kong will also be collaborating with Thailand to research the development of a central bank digital currency (CBDC) for cross-border payments.

Hong Kong-based crypto exchanges offering security token trading now required to acquire SFC license
Hong Kong’s watchdog released a position paper on Nov. 6, explaining that crypto trading platforms will be treated similar to traditional brokers if these platforms offer trading in security tokens. Any businesses that fall within this category will be governed by the authority of the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC).

Russia seeks to create legislation that would force cybercriminals to give up stolen crypto assets
Russia’s Ministry of Internal Affairs is looking to create legislation that will allow authorities to force criminals to give up stolen digital assets. The agency has mandated that the proposal on this front should be completed by Dec. 2021, CoinDesk reported citing RBC.

Ukraine government signs MOU with Binance for cryptocurrency regulation
Ukraine is trying to establish rules for cryptocurrencies and has teamed up leading cryptocurrency exchange Binance to achieve this goal. In a press release, Binance announced that it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Ukraine’s Ministry of Digital Transformation. The aim of the collaboration is to help the country create a regulatory framework that would oversee the evolution of digital assets.


  • Stablecoins such as Facebook’s Libra could be subject to securities rules: IOSCO
  • North Korea laundered money through a Hong Kong-based blockchain firm: UN

Company News

  • Animoca Brands, ConsenSys back blockchain game developer Sky Mavis’ $1.5M funding round
  • Data storage blockchain protocol Arweave raises $5M in token-based funding
  • Nervos Network to launch mainnet ‘Lina’; secures $72M via token sale
  • Kadena’s public blockchain goes live; Third token sale to begin today
  • eToro announces second deal of 2019 with acquisition of crypto portfolio tracking app Delta
  • SEC greenlights Silvergate Bank’s IPO; Shares valued at $12
  • Tassat moves forward with crypto derivatives launch plan, acquires SEF registration with CFTC
  • Harbor becomes first blockchain company to secure broker-dealer and transfer agent licenses
  • Ripple hits 300 customer milestone amid ongoing XRP securities lawsuit
  • Bittrex gets hit by a lawsuit by angel investor following the hacking of 100 bitcoins in April
  • BitMEX users’ emails leaked following exchange’s blunder
  • Crypto exchange DX.Exchange suspends operations citing high costs


Digital Currency Initiatives

  • Crypto exchange AAX launches service offering trading on spot, future, OTC P2P contract amidst SFC’s new regulation
  • Telegram’s test wallet released on macOS, Windows, Linux 64; Meeting with SEC on Feb. 18, 19
  • MAS-approved fintech firm Xfers to launch SGD stablecoin initiative powered by Zilliqa blockchain
  • Turkey to finish developing digital lira by end of 2020, says President Erdogan
  • PBoC’s Digital Currency Research Institute signs fintech research cooperation agreement with Huawei
  • Microsoft unveils token-minting platform for enterprises

Blockchain Initiatives

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Feb 21, 2020 (Friday)
Paxos launches blockchain-based securities settlement solution with Credit Suisse and Instinet
Brazil to launch new payment system in response to cryptocurrencies
Digital currency exchange Coinbase Pro lists Kyber Network token
Norwegian Air to soon start accepting crypto payments
Swedish central bank begins CBDC pilot with Accenture
Italian soccer team Juventus launches ethereum-based digital collectibles with Sorare
Feb 20, 2020 (Thursday)
Telecom companies complete cross-carrier mobile payments using blockchain
National Stock Exchange of Australia to develop DLT-based digital securities trading platform
South Korean ICO project discontinued, to return $7.5M to token holders
Samsung maintains crypto support in soon-to-launch Galaxy S20
BIS appoints Innovation Hub heads to lead Singapore and Switzerland
Coinbase becomes first crypto company to receive Visa principal membership
Dubai Economy and six banks launch KYC Blockchain Consortium
Crypto Technicals: ETH/USD under downside pressure after 'Bearish Engulfing' pattern
Tim Draper buys $1M worth of Aragon Tokens to create digital courts for DAOs
Renewable energy firm Acciona commits to take CBI’s blockchain-based carbon credits trading platform global
Crypto Technicals: BTC/USD trades below 21-EMA, break below 4H 200 MA (9386) to trigger further downside
Crypto exchange Coinfloor to launch a simplified bitcoin buying service
Indonesia’s customs department joins IBM- Maersk blockchain shipping platform “TradeLens”
Feb 19, 2020 (Wednesday)
Crypto custodian BitGo acquires digital securities startup Harbor
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