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Sunak’s Administration Targets Summer for Implementing Stablecoin and Crypto Staking Regulation

Sunak

The UK government has recently unveiled its ambitious plan to introduce much-anticipated regulations on cryptocurrencies within the next six months. This announcement was made by Bim Afolami, the Economic Secretary to the Treasury, at a high-profile cryptocurrency event in London.

The government’s primary focus is to establish clear rules for stablecoins and staking services by August. Stablecoins, which are cryptocurrencies tied to traditional assets like the US dollar or pound sterling, are designed to reduce volatility. On the other hand, staking is a process that rewards cryptocurrency holders for their role in validating blockchain networks.

Afolami expressed the government’s determination to expedite these regulations, stating, “We’re very clear that we want to get these things done as soon as possible. And I think over the next six months, those things are doable.”

This move follows years of promises to regulate the multi-billion-pound industry. Despite cryptocurrency regulation being a key promise of Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s 2022 leadership campaign, progress has been slow, stunting the sector’s growth.

With the next general election looming in early 2025, the government is under pressure to deliver these rules. However, Afolami confessed that he could not commit to a timeline for regulating crypto exchanges and other major industry players due to the vast amount of work involved.

The spotlight is now on Westminster, as observers eagerly wait to see if the government can transform its rhetoric into reality within the stipulated six months.

Currently, the UK’s cryptocurrency industry, which contributes billions to the economy each year, is lightly regulated. However, stricter rules are expected to be implemented over the next year. The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the main financial regulator overseeing cryptocurrencies, has so far concentrated on anti-money laundering rules for crypto asset firms and introduced new rules in 2023 to regulate crypto promotion and advertising.

Despite these measures, comprehensive formal regulation is still lacking but is expected to be introduced through legislation in 2024. The UK government has confirmed plans to regulate crypto exchanges, trading platforms, custodians, and more under traditional financial services rules.

The UK aspires to be a global hub for ethical crypto innovation. While crypto assets are currently high-risk investments with limited oversight, formal legislation is seen as crucial to building trust and confidence, according to industry leaders. The entire industry is now eagerly awaiting the government’s concrete action to deliver on its promises of regulation within the next year.

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