The European Union’s landmark crypto legislation, the Markets in Crypto Assets regulation, or MiCA, has been delayed until April because of issues in translating the rules into the 24 official languages in the EU.
"MiCA is tabled to be voted by the plenary in April and to my knowledge, the delay is technical, caused by translating issues," an official familiar with the matter said.
EU procedures require legal acts such as MiCA, which was negotiated in English, to be available in all the bloc's 24 official languages.
EU officials said MiCA would have prevented the mismanagement at crypto exchange FTX, which collapsed in November. But the legislation, CoinDesk reported, has a major loophole in which companies such as FTX based outside the EU would be able to serve EU customers without extra regulation.
European legislators have agreed upon the law in principle, but the almost 400-page text needs to be formally signed off by both lawmakers and national governments that make up the EU's Governing Council. The law will apply to all member nations, but much of the implementation and interpretation will depend on regulators in each countries.
MiCA introduces the first-ever common licensing regime for crypto wallets and exchanges to operate across the EU to serve its population of 450 million, and it has a reserve requirement for stablecoin issuers. The law is seen as a standard setter that will influence crypto rulemaking across the world.
UPDATE (Jan. 17, 11:42 UTC): Adds additional details and background throughout.
The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups. As part of their compensation, certain CoinDesk employees, including editorial employees, may receive exposure to DCG equity in the form of stock appreciation rights, which vest over a multi-year period. CoinDesk journalists are not allowed to purchase stock outright in DCG.
Learn more about Consensus 2023, CoinDesk’s longest-running and most influential event that brings together all sides of crypto, blockchain and Web3. Head to consensus.coindesk.com to register and buy your pass now.