The Governor of Sweden’s central bank has suggested that Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies will be subject to regulation, due largely to the visible popularity of cryptocurrencies.
Bloomberg reported the comments made by Risbank Governor Stefan Ingves on Monday, who also cited money laundering as one of the leading reasons that cryptocurrency cannot escape regulation:
There is currently no specific regulation of cryptocurrency in Sweden, however under Sweden’s Financial Supervisory Authority, Bitcoin is subject to mandatory reporting requirements. Cryptocurrencies are not viewed by the government as currency, and the central bank has ruled that “cryptocurrencies are not money”.
Sweden is one of the most progressive countries in terms of its digital payments infrastructure, with mere 1% of cash circulating in 2018. The Risbank is also one of the most advanced with its plans to release a central bank digital currency (CBDC) with research starting in 2017. Sveriges Riksbank governor Stefan Ingves said in April of this year that Sweden may launch their e-Krona in five years time, the first nation to provide a time frame for a CBDC launch.
In terms of crypto regulation, Sweden’s financial markets minister Asa Lindhagen has called it a “work in progress at the international level”. As it stands, the Swedish government is currently in the process of beginning to regulate crypto exchange platforms, and also has its eyes on the issue of money laundering.
China’s latest crypto ban has brought the issue of regulation to the fore, and along with Sweden, China is one of the most advanced countries in terms of its central bank digital currency developments.
As a number of governments start to crack down on crypto companies and exchanges, and an increase in disclosure of banks announcing a move towards CBDCs, regulation of cryptocurrencies has become even more of a hot button issue.