UK’s AML Rules Could Force Up to 50 Crypto Firms to Cease Trading: Report

The FCA has expressed concern that a "significantly high number" of crypto-asset businesses are not meeting its standards on AML.

Jun 4, 2021 at 11:48 a.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 1:06 p.m. UTC

As many as 50 firms in the U.K. dealing with cryptocurrencies could be forced to close down after failing to meet the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA’s) anti-money laundering (AML) rules, according to a Guardian report.

  • On Thursday, the U.K. financial watchdog said it is concerned that a "significantly high number" of crypto-asset businesses are not meeting its standards on AML, which in turn has seen an “unprecedented number of businesses withdrawing their applications."
  • The FCA has extended the deadline for crypto businesses to register under its Temporary Registrations Regime (TRR) from July 9 to March 31 of next year.
  • The TRR was established in December 2020 to allow businesses that had registered to continue trading after the regulator became the AML and counter-terrorist financing supervisor for crypto firms.
  • It is estimated only five crypto-asset firms have been admitted to the FCA’s formal register and 90 firms are currently being assessed through the regulator's TRR scheme, reports the Guardian.  
  • While 51 crypto asset firms so far have withdrawn their applications, not all may be covered by FCA requirements, meaning not all of them may be forced to shut down, according to the publication.
  • Those covered crypto-asset firms that refuse to shut down could face fines or legal action by the FCA.

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