Estonia Issues Over 900 Licenses to Cryptocurrency Businesses

Neutral Estonia Issues Over 900 Licenses to Cryptocurrency Businesses

In less than a year since Estonia introduced licensing for companies operating in the cryptocurrency industry, the number of licenses issued has surpassed 900. Authorities in the Baltic country have adopted a rather progressive approach to regulating the crypto space but startups have complained that local banks are still reluctant to offer them regular services. Isle of Man Updates Registration Rules for Cryptocurrency Businesses

Approval Takes About Two Weeks

Estonia, which is among the first jurisdictions in the European Union to legalize crypto-related activities, grants two types of license. So far, around 500 licenses have been issued to entities operating digital asset exchange platforms. Over 400 cryptocurrency wallet providers have been licensed as well, Russian news outlet Bitnovosti reported, quoting Nikolay Demchuk from the law firm Njord which works in the sector.

Njord has recently published an overview of the situation around Estonian cryptocurrency licenses, quoting data from the country's Register of Economic Activities. According to the report, obtaining a license is a relatively straightforward and simple process.

The Estonian Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), the regulator issuing the licenses, has 30 days to review each application but in most cases an approval is granted within only one or two weeks. However, a license can be revoked if the company has not started operations within six months of receiving it.

The main requirements businesses have to meet stem from various know-your-customer and anti-money laundering regulations. Crypto entities registered in Estonia are legally operating in the EU, of which the country is a member state, and licensees are obliged to comply with relevant local and European laws.

Opening a Bank Account Still a Problem

Much like other countries where authorities have been trying to create a crypto-friendly environment, Switzerland for example, traditional financial institutions in Estonia have been slow to catch up with regulators and hesitant to respond to the needs of the nascent industry. Restricted access to regular banking services remains a major hurdle for Estonian fintech businesses, many of which are now working with foreign banks and payment providers. Nikolay Demchuk commented:

Opening a bank account is the biggest problem facing crypto companies. Estonian banks are not yet ready to serve clients operating with cryptocurrency.

Nevertheless, many investors have been attracted by the generally favorable conditions offered by Estonia. The country has already issued licenses to a number of crypto startups. In early June, regulators granted licenses for wallet and exchange services to trading platform Coinmetro. Later that month, a company that develops trading software and white label solutions, Ibinex, obtained a license to operate from Estonia. In September and this week FIU approved the applications filed by two new cryptocurrency exchanges ­- Ironx and B2bx.

Taking the Lead in Europe

The new Estonian Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Prevention Act came into force almost a year ago. According to Demchuk, the legislation has allowed Estonia to become the first country in the European Union to regulate the circulation of cryptocurrencies and implement the licensing regime for companies operating in the sector.

At some point, the tiny European nation even planned to issue its own cryptocurrency, Estcoin. However, Tallinn was forced to abandon the idea under pressure from EU institutions. The strongest criticism came from the European Central Bank. In September of last year, its President Mario Draghi stated that "No member state can introduce its own currency" in the Eurozone.

This past summer, it was reported that the government intends to proceed with a limited-scale project to issue an Estonian digital token. The crypto may be used for transactions between participants in the country's e-residency program. Tens of thousands of foreign nationals have already been issued the special digital ID cards that allow them to take advantage of many benefits offered by Estonia, from simplified procedures for establishing a company to preferential taxation.

What do you think about Estonian policies regarding the cryptocurrency industry? Let us know in the comments section below. Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Bitsane, Covesting, Swissone. At Bitcoin.com there's a bunch of free helpful services. For instance, have you seen our Tools page? You can even lookup the exchange rate for a transaction in the past. Or calculate the value of your current holdings. Or create a paper wallet. And much more.

Lubomir Tassev is a journalist from tech-savvy Bulgaria, which sometimes finds itself at the forefront of advances it cannot easily afford. Quoting Hitchens, he says: "Being a writer is what I am, rather than what I do." International politics and economics are two other sources of inspiration.

11/17/2018 / 09:15:28 Source: bitcoin.com

BTC
1 BTC=$3,714.12
XRP
1 XRP=$0.3531
ETH
1 ETH=$102.19
XUC
1 XUC=$2.27
EOS
1 EOS=$2.70
BCH
1 BCH=$104.39

News Feed 50

Cointelegraph Neutral - Spanish Renewable Energy Operator to Trace Electricity Generation With Blockchain read more.
12/18/2018 / 23:45:00
Bitcoinmagazine Neutral - Pierre Rochard: “Lightning Adoption Will Basically Mirror Bitcoin Adoption” read more.
12/18/2018 / 23:34:48
Cryptonewsreview Neutral - Bitmain’s problems mount as crypto declines cast doubt on IPO plans read more.
12/18/2018 / 23:31:15
Ccn Neutral - Swiss Federal Council Opts for Minimal Regulation read more.
12/18/2018 / 23:22:03
Coindesk Neutral - Institutional Crypto and a New Generation of Wall Street Leaders read more.
12/18/2018 / 23:15:08
Cointelegraph Neutral - JPMorgan Chase Analysts Say Prolonged Crypto Bear Market Is Scaring Off Institutions read more.
12/18/2018 / 23:15:00
Themerkle Neutral - Darknet Vendors Charge $1 per Stolen Personal Data “Account” read more.
12/18/2018 / 23:07:56
Cointelegraph Neutral - Bitcoin Payment Processor Closes Seed Investment Round Backed by Tim Draper read more.
12/18/2018 / 22:40:00
Coindesk Neutral - Blythe Masters, CEO of Blockchain Startup Digital Asset, Is Stepping Down read more.
12/18/2018 / 22:31:14
Ccn Neutral - Wanchain 3.0 Adds Loopring Enabling On-Chain Decentralized Trading read more.
12/18/2018 / 22:19:57
Bitcoinist Neutral - Binance CEO Says ‘It Doesn’t Have to Be a Competition’ With Coinbase read more.
12/18/2018 / 22:00:09
Cointelegraph Neutral - Gaming Giant Atari to Launch ‘Blockchain Versions’ of Two Popular Games read more.
12/18/2018 / 22:00:00
Coinspeaker Neutral - Maltese Blockchain Bank Set to Start Operations by Mid-2019 read more.
12/18/2018 / 21:59:43
Cointelegraph Neutral - Russian Region Conducts Blockchain Election With 40K Participants read more.
12/18/2018 / 21:45:00
Newsbtc Neutral - Bitcoin Is Here to Stay: Blockstream Satellite Expansion Makes Sure of It read more.
12/18/2018 / 21:30:37
Cointelegraph Neutral - Pro-Bitcoin Official in the White House: What We Know About Trump’s New Chief Of Staff read more.
12/18/2018 / 21:20:00
Ccn Neutral - Binance Labs Launches 8 Blockchain Startups read more.
12/18/2018 / 21:16:31
Newsbtc Neutral - Novogratz: Interest Left Crypto for Macro, But Bitcoin Will Emerge As Store of Value read more.
12/18/2018 / 21:02:27
Bitcoin.Com Neutral - Cointext Rolls Out Mobile BCH Services in Bangladesh, Now Services 38 Countries read more.
12/18/2018 / 20:55:03
Cointelegraph Neutral - Korean Gov’t Pilots Blockchain for Logistics Innovation in Country’s Largest Port read more.
12/18/2018 / 20:54:00
Cryptoinsider Neutral - VeChain: Supply chain management protocol for counterfeit prevention read more.
12/18/2018 / 20:43:28
Coindesk Neutral - Overstock’s Medici Acquires Digital Tokens Representing Startup Equity Shares read more.
12/18/2018 / 20:41:31
Ccn Neutral - Bull Gone: Bitcoin Price Forming Doji to Signal Potential Trend Reversal read more.
12/18/2018 / 20:21:38
Themerkle Positive - Bitcoin Cash Price Rises to $100 And Overtakes Litecoin read more.
12/18/2018 / 20:00:51
Newsbtc Neutral - Bitcoin Sustains Above $3,500 After Widespread Market Rally read more.
12/18/2018 / 20:00:36
Coindesk Neutral - Tim Draper Invests $1.25 Million in Bitcoin Payments Processor OpenNode read more.
12/18/2018 / 20:00:06
Cryptoglobe Neutral - The Week: Stablecoin Basis Folds, Revolut Wins Banking License, Swiss Crypto Exchange Launching read more.
12/18/2018 / 20:00:00
Ccn Neutral - Stablecoin Company Tether Ltd. Made $6.6 Million in Interest from January to July 2018, Report Does Not Confirm Full Cash Reserves read more.
12/18/2018 / 19:23:04
Ethnews.Com Neutral - German Bank Tests Blockchain For Development In Africa read more.
12/18/2018 / 19:09:38
Themerkle Neutral - First Major Christmas 2018 Crypto Scam Targets Basic Attention Token read more.
12/18/2018 / 19:02:37
Bitcoinist Neutral - Blockstream Satellite Now Means Most Of The World Can Use Bitcoin Without Internet read more.
12/18/2018 / 19:00:09
Cryptoglobe Neutral - Iran Minister Indicates Support for Blockchain, Both Public and Private Uses read more.
12/18/2018 / 19:00:00
Ccn Neutral - Atari Partners With Startup to Make Blockchain Versions of Popular Titles like Roller Coaster Tycoon read more.
12/18/2018 / 18:56:55
Cointelegraph Neutral - Israel: Financial Services Firm GMT Joins RippleNet read more.
12/18/2018 / 18:52:00
Ethnews.Com Neutral - Reports Indicate Tether Has Held Adequate Reserves read more.
12/18/2018 / 18:43:43
Cryptopotato Neutral - EOS Block Producers Are in Risk of Bankruptcy Despite The Recent 25% Price Gain read more.
12/18/2018 / 18:34:32
Newsbtc Negative - Bitcoin Scam Alert: Criminals Demand BTC Payment to Call Off Hit Man read more.
12/18/2018 / 18:30:39
Ccn Neutral - Education The Biggest Barrier Preventing Online Investors From Purchasing Cryptocurrency read more.
12/18/2018 / 18:23:47
Cointelegraph Neutral - Belgium's Financial Watchdog Updates Crypto Scam Blacklist to Total 113 Sites read more.
12/18/2018 / 18:22:00
Cryptoglobe Neutral - BitMEX Trading Volume Way Down After Supports Broken read more.
12/18/2018 / 18:00:00
Coinspeaker Neutral - 550,000+ Hotels in 210 Countries Can Now be Booked with XRP read more.
12/18/2018 / 17:59:51
Cointelegraph Neutral - A Year After $20K, Blockchain Capital Exec Says Investors Will Regret Not Buying in Now read more.
12/18/2018 / 17:59:00
Themerkle Neutral - Institutional Investors No Longer Interested in Bitcoin: JP Morgan read more.
12/18/2018 / 17:41:35
Blokt Neutral - Japan’s New Crypto Regulation Draft Report Is Ready read more.
12/18/2018 / 17:29:23
Trustnodes Neutral - ICOs Now Trading on Exchanges With Investors’ ETH read more.
12/18/2018 / 17:28:21
Coinnounce Neutral - Bitcoin institutional adoption rising: BTC price analysis read more.
12/18/2018 / 17:24:41
Newsbtc Neutral - Electricity Consumption of Bitcoin is a Non-Issue: Solar Energy is Free in Some Regions read more.
12/18/2018 / 17:01:42
Blokt Neutral - NewEconoLab’s NeoRay Will Make NEO Smart Contract Development Easier read more.
12/18/2018 / 16:59:35
Financemagnates Neutral - eToro Survey Finds Huge Demand for Cryptocurrency Education read more.
12/18/2018 / 16:59:02
Bitcoin.Com Neutral - Transnistria Welcomes Crypto Miners, Plans to Expand the Industry read more.
12/18/2018 / 16:55:50
Negative
4.1%
Neutral
94.5%
Positive
1.1%
Mixed
0.2%

Latest comments:

4 min
Hey Sam, how is it going? But I must explain to you how all this mistaken idea of denouncing of a pleasure and praising pain was born
3 min
Pretty good. Doing my homework.. No one rejects, dislikes, or avoids pleasure itself, because it is pleasure, but because
2 min
Any chance to go out? To take a trivial example, which of us ever undertakes laborious physical exercise, except to obtain some advantage
2 min
.. Maybe 40-50 mins. I don't know exactly. On the other hand, we denounce with righteous indignation and dislike men who are so beguiled
1 min
Anyway sounds great! These cases are perfectly simple and easy to distinguish.