Italy to Increase Surveillance of Crypto Market With Fines as High as 5M Euros: Reuters

A draft document reviewed by Reuters is due to be approved by the cabinet later Thursday.

AccessTimeIconJun 20, 2024 at 11:59 a.m. UTC
Updated Jun 20, 2024 at 12:02 p.m. UTC
  • Italy is beefing up surveillance over risks tied to the crypto asset market.
  • The draft decree reviewed by Reuters said fines as high as 5 million euros ($5.4 million) could be imposed.

Italy is set to adopt measures that will include high fines for those who manipulate the crypto asset market as part of a wider scheme to beef up surveillance of risks tied to the sector, Reuters reported, citing a draft decree it reviewed.

The document is due to be approved by the cabinet later today and will include fines between 5,000 euros ($5,400) and 5 million euros for insider trading, unlawful disclosure of inside information or market manipulation, the report said.

Countries in the European Union are gearing up to implement the bloc's regulatory framework for the sector, known as the Markets in Crypto Asset (MiCA). Part of that process is deciding on which local regulators will help supervise crypto – referred to as National Competent Authorities (NCA).

The Reuters report said the draft decree designates Italy's central bank and market watchdog, Consob, as the relevant authorities.

Italy has been preparing to follow the framework for some time, with the governor of the central bank adding the caveat that it is doing so despite a survey showing only about 2% of Italian households held "modest amounts, on average" of crypto and that the exposure of Italian intermediaries to the market was also very limited.

Italy set up mandatory registration requirement for crypto company operating in the nation but approved 73 firms as virtual currency service providers without running proper checks to make sure they are safe for investors, CoinDesk reported previously.

Optimism about crypto in Italy has been reflected by moves such as one from Conio, a cryptocurrency wallet company, which teamed up with Coinbase (COIN) to bring digital assets to Italian banks and financial institutions.

Edited by Sheldon Reback.


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Amitoj Singh

Amitoj Singh is a CoinDesk reporter.