The first meeting of the UK’s Cryptoassets task force took place on the 21st May, with key objectives being agreed for the group as it moves forward. Amongst those present at the meeting were Katharine Braddick, Director General of Financial Services at HM Treasury, Andrew Bailey, Chief Executive of the FCA, and Dave Ramsden, Deputy Governor of the Bank of England. Ramsden was quoted as saying:
The technologies that underpin cryptoassets have the potential to deliver benefits both to the financial system and to the economy it serves. This taskforce will enable us to work closely with the Treasury and the FCA to explore how the opportunities posed by these technologies can be realised, while also tackling the risks arising from cryptoassets.
The task force are due to produce a report in the third quarter of this year, which will address the challenges and potential of blockchain, the situation regarding cryptocurrencies, and what regulation, if, any, they feel is required to safeguard the public.
The task force is part of a wider fintech strategy that will also see a set of standards established to help fintech firms to partner with banks. Chancellor of the Exchequer Phillip Hammond, said:
I am committed to helping the sector grow and flourish, and our ambitious Sector Strategy sets out how we will ensure the UK remains at the cutting edge of the digital revolution. As part of that, a new task force will help the UK to manage the risks around Cryptoassets, as well as harnessing the potential benefits of the underlying technology.
The strategy was announced at the International Fintech Conference back in March this year.
UK-Australia Fintech Bridge
As part of the UK’s ongoing fintech strategy, they are also working on a “fintech bridge” between the UK and Australia. The government hope that this strategy will help UK-based firms expand into the Australian market, and create regulatory unity across the two countries. Innovate Finance and FinTech Australia have been employed to advise on this ongoing project. Innovate CEO Charlotte Crosswell, spoke to the International Fintech Conference:
This exciting partnership between Innovate Finance and FinTech Australia will foster even stronger ties between the fintech communities of our two countries and is an important step in supporting innovation in financial services on an international scale. It offers an excellent opportunity to work together to share industry best practices, strengthen understanding and knowledge of each other’s fintech markets, and drive progressive regulatory approaches to help our fintech sector grow.
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