Bitcoin exchanges in Spain are not subject to supervision by the CNMV

Key facts:
  • The CNMV proposes that the exchanges be subject to the regulations for the prevention of money laundering.

  • The CNMV clarifies that the platforms that offer security tokens can be subject to supervision.

Bitcoin (BTC) and other cryptocurrency exchanges in Spain are not regulated or supervised by the National Securities and Market Commission (CNMV). This was clarified to the Blockchain Arbitration Society (BAS), an association dedicated to the economy of crypto assets.

In a response from the CNMV to this organization, they make it clear that cryptocurrency exchange platforms for fiat money and other assets are not subject to their jurisdiction.. In addition, they admit that, until now, there is no specific regulation for these companies, apparently ignoring the existence of the Anti-Fraud Law, which puts local exchanges at a disadvantage compared to international ones.

“Platforms on which only crypto assets that are not considered financial instruments are traded, such as cryptocurrencies, would not be subject to the scope of supervision of the CNMV,” they clarify from the Commission.

The CNMV clarified that they are not the entity that regulates bitcoin exchanges. Source: Information Journal.

Subject to money laundering regulations, “at a minimum”

For this reason, from the CNMV they propose that the exchanges be subject, “at a minimum”, to the money laundering prevention regulations, currently in force in Spain, and that initially gave way to a registry of virtual asset service providers (PSAV), which we have talked about in CriptoNoticias.

In Spain, companies that provide services linked to bitcoin have to comply with AML/KYC obligations, specifically pointed out to reduce money laundering.

«Those who provide the service of exchanging virtual currency for fiduciary currency, the sale of virtual currencies through the delivery or receipt of euros or any other foreign currency of legal tender or electronic money accepted as a means of payment in the country in which it is been issued”, reads the legislation.

Platforms with security tokens do fall under the CNMV

Meanwhile, the CNMV clarifies that the platforms that offer security tokens, which are those that grant, in general terms, rights over the company; they can be subject to application of the securities market regulations.

According to what they indicate, these assets should have authorizations to operate as a trading venue, investment services company (ESI) or credit institution “that operates as a systematic internalizer”.

“The management of the trading center should be carried out by an ESI or by a governing body of a market, and they would be subject in general to market regulations and the scope of supervision of the CNMV,” the entity specifies.

Financial beach bar, or “other entities”

Something that especially caught the attention of the BAS was the “other entities” section, which they called “financial beach bars”. By definition of the CNMV itself, it is entities that do not have any type of authorization or are registered for any purpose with the Commission, “and that they could be carrying out some type of fundraising activity or providing some service of a financial nature.”

The purpose of this space is to inform investors that these entities they are not supervised and that carry out activities to capture savings from the public through advertising.

According to what they say, this can “be confused with the activities of raising public savings typical of the stock markets, causing investors to mistakenly believe that they are under the supervisory umbrella of the National Securities Market Commission.”

In CriptoNoticias we recently registered the existence of these beach bars, when the CNMV graylisted several international exchanges, such as Binance, Coinbase, KuCoin and others.

It was a list of 89 companies that do not have the endorsement of the regulatory body. At that time, we clarify, as now, that being on that list does not imply any prohibitions or restrictions. It only makes it known that the companies operate without authorization from the CNMV to attract investment.

The clarification of the CNMV makes it understood that in Spain there is dispersion around the regulations of the Bitcoin ecosystem, although certainly It is the European country that has made the most progress in this regard., as recorded in this medium. It remains to be seen if the regulatory gear finally comes to fruition in that nation.

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