Bitcoin Dealers Seek Regulation in U.K., Startups Launch Bitcoin ATMs (Sept. 9, 2013)
Sept. 9, 2013
Financial institutions and Bitcoin companies met last week with several British government agencies, asking them to consider regulating the virtual currency so they can be used to promote commercial growth and encourage financial innovation.
Representatives from Bitcoin companies and smaller FIs told officials that “big banks are blocking the creation of business accounts for money remittance because of fears over financial crime,” according to London-based The Guardian. Some high street banks in the U.K. also reportedly have cited AML concerns as a reason to close current accounts for money services businesses and e-money issuers.
Despite reports that the U.K.’s Financial Conduct Authority is “actively considering” Bitcoin regulation, the agency has said it’s merely “keeping an eye” on Bitcoin developments. During the past few months, U.S. Magistrate Judge Amos L. Mazzant deemed Bitcoin a form of currency; Thailand’s central bank declared buying, selling or making purchases using Bitcoin illegal; and Germany declared Bitcoin a recognized “unit of account,” which, among other ramifications, means that citizens will have to pay capital gains on Bitcoin income.
In other Bitcoin news, several companies, including RoboCoin and Lamassu Bitcoin Ventures, have created Bitcoin ATMs. The two companies say they are fielding inquiries from all over the world, and RoboCoin reportedly expects to have machines, which can be used to convert cash to the digital currency, in Canada later this year.