EU regulator publishes consultation on MiCA standards

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EU regulator publishes consultation on MiCA standards
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ESMA has released a consultation paper on MiCA implementation requirements.
Industry players are requested to provide feedback by September 20.
The EU regulator will present the final proposals to the European Parliament by June 30, 2024.

The European and Securities Markets Authority (ESMA) has published a consultation paper on the first requirements as outlined in the recently adopted Markets in Crypto Assets (MiCA) regulation.

ESMA’s “Technical standards specifying certain requirements of the Markets in Crypto Assets Regulation (MiCA),” seeks industry feedback on the proposals set to be presented before the EU parliament latest by June 30, 2024.

According to the regulator’s timeline, the consultation will be open for crypto industry’s responses and comments up to September 20, 2023. 

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Verena Ross, Chair of ESMA, stated:

“This first consultation package is an important milestone for ESMA in the implementation of the MiCA framework. It translates our ambition to set high regulatory standards in the EU for crypto-asset related activities into concrete requirements. We are determined to ensure entities involved in crypto-asset related activities understand that the EU is not a place for forum-shopping.  We also want to remind consumers that, even with the implementation of MiCA, there will be no such thing as a safe crypto-asset.”

Draft proposals include rules on conflict of interest

According to ESMA, MiCA regulation requires that the regulator develops both regulating technical standards (RTS) and implementing technical standards (ITS).

This is the first consultation paper the regulator has released for MiCA and details seven proposals – five are draft RTSs while two are ITS.

Specifically, the RTSs requirements include notification by financial providers if they plan to offer crypto-asset services; regulatory approval for digital assets service providers; and crypto-asset service providers (CASPs) handling of customer complaints. The draft also covers disclosures of conflict of interest.

On requirements for segregation of client funds and assets, the regulator points to Article 62(2)(k) of MiCA. According to it, CASP applicants are obliged to ensure this is the case, with a description of how this is done.

“Some of the recent collapses in the crypto world have shown a misuse of clients’ funds and crypto-assets. This seems to have been permitted by a lack of governance and internal controls,” ESMA noted in the paper.

The ESMA proposals are a collaboration between the regulator and the European Banking Authority (EBA), which also released its first standards package on Wednesday, July 12.





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