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IOSCO’s Ambitious Crypto Map Drawn with Cross-border Applications in Mind

Sweeping, holistic cryptocurrency regulation is trending. On the heels of the landmark “markets in crypto-assets” (MiCA) framework recently codified by the European Council, the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) issued broad and overarching recommendations for a worldwide framework detailing crypto asset best practices and regulations.

The recommendations are now open for public consultation as the securities market consortium is anticipating a final report by the end of the year. As such, individuals and organizations interested in commenting on the consultation framework can send remarks to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. through July. After the comment period is closed and final recommendations are drafted, individual jurisdictions will be expected to review their existing regulations and integrate IOSCO’s recommendations into their jurisdictional frameworks.

Jean-Paul Servais, chairperson of IOSCO, said the regulatory coalition is particularly well positioned to make the recommendations as it boasts more than 130 members covering more than 95% of global security markets.

“As the G7 Finance Ministers and Central Bank communiqué of 13 May has once again reminded us, the time has come to put an end to the regulatory uncertainty that characterises crypto activities,” Servais said in a statement. “[The] consultation paper received unanimous support from the IOSCO Board and is the outcome of an intense period of regulatory risk analysis, information sharing and capacity building. As such, it will mark a turning point in addressing the very clear and proximate risks to investor protection and market integrity risks.”

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"#Bitcoin experienced a 1.5% increase on Tuesday afternoon, climbing back above $27k to reach $27,268, as the initial worldwide attempt to regulate #cryptocurrency assets was initiated. The International Organization of Securities Commissions, responsible for regulating financial markets, introduced an 18-point strategy aimed at establishing protective measures for cryptocurrency investments."

The organization issued 18 policy recommendations covering six separate key areas aimed at addressing market integrity and easing investor concerns. Areas addressed in the paper include:

  1. Conflicts born of the potential integration of functions and activities
  2. Fraud, market manipulation and insider trading
  3. Cross-border regulatory cooperation and risks
  4. Client asset protection and custody concerns
  5. Technological and operational risks
  6. Retail access, distribution and suitability

“The strong support of the IOSCO Board will ensure the timely implementation of the recommendations by all IOSCO members to limit the risk of regulatory arbitrage. Strengthened cooperation between our members while supervising these markets through a global framework will contribute to protecting investors better and to credible deterrence of non-compliant actors,” Servais adds.

According to IOSCO, policy recommendations are specifically designed with “definitional and interpretive jurisdictional differences” in mind. As such, the recommendations attempt to deliver functional risk mitigation that does not rely on a “one-size fits all prescriptive taxonomy.”

“The Recommendations in IOSCO’s Consultation Report set expectations and guardrails to regulate and supervise crypto-asset markets, which are inherently cross-border in nature,” said Lim Tuang Lee, chairperson of the IOSCO Board-Level Fintech Task Force. “Crypto-asset service providers need to address unacceptable conflicts of interest and take far more seriously the right of clients to have their monies and assets carefully minded and accounted for.” 

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