• UK lawmakers have proposed to regulate cryptocurrencies like gambling due to their potential risks.
• The House of Commons Treasury Committee’s opposition to the government’s plans has generated an industry backlash.
• The U.K. government is adamant that it will press ahead with its plans to regulate crypto using existing financial legislation.
UK Lawmakers Call for Crypto Regulation as Gambling
The U.K.’s House of Commons Treasury Committee has called for digital assets such as Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH) to be regulated as gambling, citing potential risks associated with them. This opposition has drawn backlash from the industry, despite the government’s insistence that it will proceed with its plans to regulate crypto like other financial services.
Treasury Plans Rely on Parliamentary Support
The Treasury is still adamant it will move forward on regulating digital assets like financial services, but this plan relies on parliamentary support in order to come into effect. Industry experts fear that lawmaker skepticism could present an extra obstacle when it comes to developing comprehensive crypto regulation in the U.K., despite earlier successes passing new measures on financial promotions in the sector.
Sunak’s Push for a Crypto Hub
Last year, Rishi Sunak – then finance minister, now prime minister – said he wanted to make the U.K. a “crypto hub”. Although some of Sunak’s more ambitious proposals have since been walked back, the Treasury remains committed to promoting innovation within the cryptocurrency sector by pushing ahead with existing regulations in spite of pushback from lawmakers and others in the industry.
Industry Wrath over Proposed Measures
Critics are concerned about consumer protection if unbacked crypto assets are regulated under existing legislation meant for other investments, rather than being treated more seriously as a form of gambling which carries its own risks and rewards profile. These fears have led many in the industry to view Wednesday’s panel report skeptically and voice their displeasure over what they perceive as an unwelcome intervention into cryptocurrency policymaking efforts by parliamentarians who may not be fully informed about how digital assets work or their implications for investors and users alike.
Despite this latest hiccup, there is still hope that proper regulation can be achieved regarding cryptocurrencies – but only if parliamentarians, regulators, and industry stakeholders can come together and reach agreement about how best these digital assets should be handled going forward so as not only protect consumers but also foster innovation within this burgeoning space for everyone’s benefit