European Parliament Member: Everyone Should 'Get Some Bitcoins'

NEWS
Michael del Castillo
Apr 22, 2016 at 18:28 UTC  |  Updated  Apr 22, 2016 at 23:01 UTC

A European Parliament member delivered an impassioned speech this week to an influential committee on consumer protection as part of an ultimately successful campaign to take the next step toward implementing new measures related to blockchain tech.

Antanas Guoga, an EU parliament member representing Lithuania, called blockchain a "perfect technology" as he spoke before the Internal Market for Consumer Protection Committee, which is weighing whether to advance a proposal for a new virtual currency task force.

Guoga went on to encourage members to do their own investigation of bitcoin, telling the committee:

"I'm sure a lot of us politicians haven't got any bitcoins at the moment and we're trying to make laws for something we don't understand. I would suggest everyone to get some bitcoins and really learn about the system. It's a huge leap forward and a huge opportunity."

The committee reportedly went on to pass the measure with a "huge majority" of member support.

Push for task force

The measure asks the European Commission, the executive arm of the European Union, to either create a new "task force" for monitoring virtual currency development or expand an existing task force to cover the technology.

In a statement provided to CoinDesk, the report's author, Ulrike Trebesius, advocated for an international standard of regulation for the technology, adding that in addition to supporting the creation of the task force, the committee had also decided to support guidance on the development of other digital ledger technologies for non-financial applications.

"We have achieved a technology-friendly solution to virtual currencies...Europe needs innovation and we need to keep the innovators in Europe and enable them to reach commercial success," Trebesius said.

Votes were cast the day after the newly formed European Digital Currency & Blockchain Technology Forum (EDCAB) held a roundtable series for policymakers and industry leaders in the European Parliament. The non-profit organization spent much of this week engaging with policymakers ahead of the committee vote.

From here, the EU Parliament Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs will consider whether to to support the proposal as well. A vote on the proposal will be held on 26th April.

A recording of MEP Antanas Guoga's speech can be found below:

Image via YouTube

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