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Iceland: Icelandic Central Bank Publishes Amended Rules on Foreign Exchange

(Apr. 29, 2019) On April 2, 2019, the Central Bank of Iceland published an amended version of its rules on foreign exchange. The new provisions lift some, but not all, of the remaining restrictions on foreign exchange that have been in place since Iceland’s 2008 banking crisis. (Press Release, Central Bank of Iceland, Amended Rules […]

Brazil: Brazilian President Signs Acts Addressing Bureaucracy, Corruption, and Drug Policy

(Apr. 23, 2019) On April 11, 2019, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro signed 18 acts, including measures relating to corruption, modernization, bureaucracy, drug policy, and literacy policy. (Assinados 18 Atos para Modernizar e Desburocratizar o País, NOTÍCIAS, GOVERNO DO BRASIL (Apr. 12, 2019).) Five of the most significant of the acts signed by Bolsonaro are as […]

Singapore: Payment Services Act Passed, Regulating Cryptocurrency Dealing or Exchange Services

(Apr. 17, 2019) On January 14, 2019, the Parliament of Singapore passed the Payment Services Act, bringing cryptocurrency dealing or exchange services under the supervision of the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), the city-state’s central bank and financial regulator. (Payment Services Act 2019, No. 2 of 2019 (Jan. 14, 2019, assented to by the President […]

Hong Kong: Hong Kong Monetary Authority Issues Circular on Cryptoassets

(Apr. 4, 2019) On March 18, 2019, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) issued a circular endorsing a statement on cryptoassets made by the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS). In the Circular, the HKMA asks banks planning to engage in activities relating to cryptoassets to discuss them with the HKMA and demonstrate that they […]

Ukraine: Law Liberalizing Currency Regime Comes into Effect

(Feb. 15, 2019) Ukraine’s Law on Foreign Exchange and Foreign Exchange Transactions (Foreign Exchange Law) was adopted by the Verkhovna Rada (Ukrainian legislature) on June 24, 2018, and took effect on February 7, 2019. (Law on Currency and Currency Transactions (Foreign Exchange Law), June 24, 2018, No. 2473-VIII, GOLOS UKRAINI [VOICE OF UKRAINE] (official publication […]

Italy: Measures for Simplification of Companies and Public Administration Take Effect

(Feb. 5, 2019) On December 12, 2018, new measures to simplify public administration and promote the economy entered into force in Italy. (Decree-Law No. 135 of December 14, 2018, Urgent Provisions on Supporting and Simplifying Companies and Public Administration) (D.L. No. 135), GAZZETTA UFFICIALE (G.U.), Dec. 14, 2018, G.U. website (in Italian).) Support for Small […]

Mexico: Central Bank Challenges Pay Limits for Public Servants Law Before Supreme Court

(Jan. 23, 2019) In a press release issued on January 3, 2019, the Bank of Mexico (Mexico’s central bank) announced it was filing a constitutional suit before the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation. The Bank is asking the Court to establish and delimit the scope of application of the Federal Law on Remuneration […]

Taiwan: Money Laundering Control Act Amended, Regulating Virtual Currency Platforms

(Jan. 22, 2019) On November 7, 2018, Taiwan’s Money Laundering Control Act was amended to strengthen the legal compliance requirements for the internal control and auditing of financial institutions and to include virtual currency platforms within the regulatory scope of the Act. (Money Laundering Control Act (enacted Oct. 23, 1996, last amended Nov. 7, 2018), […]

Germany: Court Holds That Bitcoin Trading Does Not Require a Banking License

(Oct. 19, 2018) On September 29, 2018, the Higher Regional Court of Berlin (Kammergericht Berlin, KG Berlin) held that trading in Bitcoin does not require a banking license because Bitcoin is not a financial instrument, in particular, not a unit of account, within the meaning of the German Banking Act. The defendant was therefore not […]

Liechtenstein: Government Adopts Consultation Report on Draft Blockchain Act

(Sept. 20, 2018) On August 28, 2018, the government of Liechtenstein adopted a consultation report on a proposed Blockchain Act. The goal of the Blockchain Act is to take advantage of the potential of blockchain technology, create legal certainty for market participants, protect users of blockchain technology from potential abuse, and reduce potential reputation risks […]