Liechtenstein, though small in size, remains at the forefront of blockchain regulation with the enactment of its Token and Trusted Technology Service Providers Act (TVTG) in 2019. The legislation provided a regulatory framework for token-related services that attracted numerous crypto service providers to establish themselves within the country. The TVTG has mainly been well-received among the European and global crypto communities, with its adoption encouraging a crypto-friendly environment through its regulatory clarity and direct communication with the Financial Market Authority (FMA).
The recent approval of the EU’s Markets in Crypto Assets (MiCA) regulation on April 27, which aims to lower risks for consumers buying crypto assets, has raised questions about its compatibility with Liechtenstein’s existing blockchain act. MiCA garnered overwhelming support, securing 517 votes in favor and only 38 against during its EU Parliament voting.
In an interview with CNBC, Whitworth emphasized the necessity for consistent regulation implementations across the E.U., stating it would provide operational clarity for crypto companies and spur innovation in Europe. Additionally, it would prevent the fragmentation of the single market. Dr. Thomas Dünser, the director of the Office for Financial Market Innovation and Digitalization in Liechtenstein, also agreed that MiCA is a significant step towards developing a unified regulatory system in Europe. He added that it draws inspiration from Liechtenstein’s TVTG, which served as a model for MiCA’s legislation.
It is worth noting that MiCA’s draft incorporates several elements of the TVTG, including the token container model, licensing requirements for blockchain-related services, and information requirements for public offerings. Consequently, Liechtenstein’s existing practices should require minimal modifications when MiCA comes into effect, rendering both laws as compatible with each other.
There remains a light skepticism regarding the harmonizing of Liechtenstein’s TVTG and MiCA regulations; however, the overall outlook appears positive. A unified regulatory framework would foster innovation and promote safe investment practices in the blockchain and crypto industries, benefiting all stakeholders. The continued collaborative efforts of Liechtenstein and the E.U. will likely lead to a harmonious crypto regulatory environment that paves the way for future advancements in the digital assets sector.