Europe Mulls ‘Europeum’ Blockchain, a Regulatory-Compliant Network for Crypto Transactions
The platform aims to use blockchain technology for public services and supply chain management.
It is complementary to MiCA – a legislation in the EU – expected to pass into law in April.
As the European Union’s Market in Crypto-Assets (MiCA) legislation edges closer to becoming law, politicians in the region, led by Belgium, are moving a step further: creating a proprietary blockchain.
Europeum tailor-made digital network, according to information shared with Coindesk by the Belgium digital minister, Mathieu Michel, would enable capturing property ownership data, driving licenses, or professional documents in a regulatory-compliant manner.
Cryptocurrency projects, mainly in the financial space, have lately witnessed fraud and exit scams, or rug pulls, besides the high-profile collapse of significant projects, which caused investors heavy losses. According to Michel, a shift into public services and supply-chain management could reduce such cases.
MiCA legislation, which, if voted into law in April, would be effected in all 27 EU member states, has set unprecedented crypto transparency requirements. Among them – mandating all crypto firms to disclose their pricing processes and trading volumes in real-time. Exchanges would also be required to separate their funds from those of their clients to avert another fallout such as the one seen with FTX.
MiCA’s universal licensing
The most important part of the MiCA draft is the introduction of universal licensing for the EU member states. Currently, some of the EU countries have partial licensing requirements. France, for instance, requires that crypto firms providing custody services be licensed, but those offering non-custodial services have an option not to register.
There is also the clause for banking and insurance services concerning cryptocurrency firms, the former having been a cause of turmoil in the sector, especially in the US, which most recently closed three crypto-friendly banks. Last week, the US authorities shuttered Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Banks, with Silvergate announcing voluntary liquidation.
Besides the MiCA and the Europeum proposal, last month, Belgium launched the Blockchain4Belgium initiative to enable the players in the sector to forward recommendations to the government about blockchain adoption. Michel remarked that the initiative aims to allow Brussels to create jobs, increase the retention of human talent, and cement the country’s digital sovereignty.
One of the challenges blockchain entrepreneurs face in Belgium relates to the tax system, an aspect Michel said was working to clarify how the virtual earnings could be taxed.