A member of the EU parliament recently tweeted that he believes crypto should be banned throughout Europe.
In a tweet Johan Van Overtveldt (an ex-finance minister of Belgium) argued for a complete ban on cryptocurrency amid recent turmoil within the banking sector.
“Another lesson to be learned from the current banking commotion. Enforce a strict ban on cryptocurrencies,” Van Overtveldt tweeted, adding that crypto provides “no economic or social value.”
“If a government bans drugs, it should also ban crypto,” he speculated, alluding to new fears stemming from the distress to Silvergate and Silicon Valley Bank, which has since spread to European markets, sending shares of banks like Credit Suisse plunging to record lows.
These comments follow a recommendation by the Basel Committee on Banking that banks create protocols to hold and maintain both Bitcoin and stablecoins.
Van Overtveldt is the economic spokesperson of a group comprising 64 EU lawmakers. He made these remarks as the European Parlament prepares to vote on important crypto licensing regulations.
Johan Van Overtveldt’s anti-crypto stance
He has been a member since 2013 of the New Flemish Alliance party. He was also elected to the European Parliament as a 2014 Member. In 2014, he was elected Minister of Finance to the Michel Government. Following the 2019 elections, he returned to the European Parliament as Chair of the Committee on Budgets. He also serves as the rapporteur on Multi-Annual Financial Framework.
Next month, the EU parliament’s lawmakers are scheduled to meet and discuss crypto regulation. It is expected that the regulation will provide a framework for exchanges and wallet providers that adheres to consumer protection and governance standards.
According to Van Overtveldt, who is spearheading parliament’s efforts to pass a law allowing for the trading of securities on distributed ledger technology, the technology does have “enormous potential” to enhance productivity but warns that many of the speculative projects that enter finance through crypto, tends to hurt consumers.
The European Union’s upcoming banking legislation includes stringent capital regulations for banks who have cryptocurrencies.
A Reuters report dated February 20th states that the Basel Committee is a group of global banking regulators. It has established a January 2025 deadline to implement capital standards for banks holding cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin, and stablecoins.
“For the time being, banks have very low crypto-asset exposures and only a limited involvement in providing crypto-asset-related services. Banks have expressed interest in trading crypto-assets on behalf of their clients and to provide crypto-assets-related services. From an international perspective, it would also allow the EU to fully align itself with the implementation deadline agreed on at Basel level.”