The Bank of France’s governor has called for more stringent licensing requirements for crypto companies in France, citing the current turmoil in the crypto markets.
During a speech in Paris on Jan. 5, Francois Villeroy de Galhau said France shouldn’t wait for upcoming EU crypto laws to enact obligatory licensing for local digital asset service providers (DASPs).
The European Parliament’s Markets in Crypto Assets bill (MiCA) that provides a crypto-licensing regime isn’t expected to come into force until potentially sometime in 2024.
A Jan. 5 Bloomberg report report, Villeroy addressed the country’s financial industry in his speech, stating:
“All the disorder in 2022 feeds a simple belief: it is desirable for France to move to an obligatory licensing of DASP as soon as possible, rather than just registration.”
Currently, crypto businesses providing crypto trading and custody are required to be “registered” with the Financial Markets Authority (AMF), the country’s market regulator.
Optional DASP licenses are not required. Licensees must adhere to a variety of requirements related business organization, conduct, financing, and other matters.
None of the 60 AMF registered crypto firms is currently licensed as DASP.
The call from Villeroy comes after an amendment was proposed in December by Senate finance commission member Hervé Maurey to eliminate a clause allowing companies to operate without a license.
France’s current laws permit firms to continue operating unlicensed in France until 2026 regardless of whether or when MiCA becomes law and creates a licensing system.
The Parliament will begin deliberations about the amendment in January.
Related: The French regulator AMF blacklists 2 crypto sites in the entire year
Since September 2020, MiCA is navigating its way through EU Parliament.
On Oct. 10, the crypto framework was passed by the European Parliament Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, the result of negotiations between the EU Council, the European Commission and the European Parliament.
The date for the final plenary vote on MiCA was moved from February 2022 to February. European Parliament member Stefan Berger explained to Cointelegraph in November the reason for the delay was “the enormous amount of work for the lawyer linguists, given the length of the legal text.”