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The ECB's plans for licensing cryptocurrency activities

The regulator explained that banks are increasingly considering whether to offer cryptocurrency products and services, and the ECB's role is to ensure, safety and security for users. 

The regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies varies quite a bit between EU countries. In some countries, some cryptocurrency transactions require a banking license. This is the direction the ECB is moving in «whether to issue licenses at the request of banks».

The ECB will first look at the following aspects:

  • Business models: the extent to which the proposed activities are consistent with the institution's overall business and risk profile;
  • Internal governance: whether the institution's policies and procedures for identifying and assessing risks associated with crypto assets are regulatory;
  • Suitability assessment: the same general suitability and appropriate qualification criteria apply here as in any licensing procedure, including IT competence.

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