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Global Weekly Fintech Round-up

16 September 2019

16 September 2019

Welcome to this week's global fintech round-up, summarising fintech regulatory developments that have happened around the world along with our Clifford Chance fintech publications and upcoming events.

Details of these and previous developments can also be found on our Fintech Topic Guide on the Clifford Chance Financial Markets Toolkit.

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CLIFFORD CHANCE PUBLICATIONS AND MATERIALS
SPOTLIGHT

Busting Bitcoin's anonymity - the implications for financial institutions

Bitcoin is designed to let users buy or sell anything without revealing their identity, but blockchain explorer software has put an end to anonymity.

GLOBAL LEGAL AND REGULATORY UPDATES

International

Americas

US:

  • (11 Sep 2019) Treasury Under Secretary, Sigal Mandelker, speech on enhancing counterterrorism sanctions, in which he calls digital currencies 'the next frontier' in the fight against the financing of terrorism.
  • (10 Sep 2019) North American Securities Administrators Association enforcement report, which includes an update on the investigations underway and enforcement actions taken as a result of Operation Cryptosweep | Press release.
  • (10 Sep 2019) Consumer Financial Protection Bureau launches the American Consumer Financial Innovation Network (ACFIN), a network intended to improve coordination among federal and state regulators in supporting financial innovation | Press release.
  • (5 Sep 2019) New York Department of Financial Services approves the first gold-backed cryptocurrency in the state | Press release.

APAC

Australia:        

  • (11 Sep 2019) Senator, Andrew Bragg, motion to establish a Senate Select Committee Inquiry into the current state of the fintech and regtech sectors in Australia and potential barriers to their progress.

China:

  • (6 Sep 2019) People's Bank of China fintech development plan (in Chinese), which sets out key development tasks and targets for fintech development in China 2019 to 2021 | Press release (in Chinese).

Japan:

  • (5 Sep 2019) Financial Services Agency report (in Japanese) on its Fintech Innovation Hub and blockchain and artificial intelligence developments in Japan.

Europe

France:

  • (12 Sep 2019) French Finance Minister, Bruno Le Maire, speech (in French and English) at the OECD's Global Blockchain Policy Forum, in which he states that France will block the development of Facebook's cryptocurrency project, Libra, as it currently stands as it threatens the 'monetary sovereignty' of governments | Transcript (in French).

Malta:  

  • (6 Sep 2019) Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) strategy for 2019-2021, in which it commits to actively monitor and manage business-related risks posed by cryptocurrency and blockchain technology.
  • (6 Sep 2019) MFSA circular to virtual financial asset (VFA) service providers on the licence application process under the VFA Act.

Switzerland:

  • (11 Sep 2019) Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) supplement to its guidelines on initial coin offerings, outlining how it treats stablecoins under Swiss supervisory law | Press release.
  • (5 Sep 2019) Swiss National Bank President, Thomas Jordan, speech on currencies, money and digital tokens, in which he argues that digital tokens are of limited use as payment instruments and stores of value.

UK:

  • (9 Sep 2019) House of Commons European Scrutiny Committee report on the 2017-19 parliamentary session, in which it concludes that it will retain the EU's proposed amendments to MiFID2 regarding crowdfunding service providers under scrutiny, in light of the ongoing EU legislative deliberations and the uncertainty surrounding Brexit.
CLIFFORD CHANCE EVENTS       

London Perspectives Series: Facebook's cryptocurrency Libra - the challenges ahead (17/18 Sep 2019)

Facebook’s proposed stablecoin, Libra, is dominating the headlines. However, growing interest means increased regulatory and political scrutiny. In this session we will look at some of the UK, US and EU legal and regulatory hurdles and the policy considerations that remain to be addressed for Libra and its crypto competitors. | For more information and to RSVP see the event webpage.

Berlin – Talking Tech Live: Innovation in Business (19 Sep 2019)

Join us in Berlin, Germany at our inaugural Talking Tech Live conference, where we will be talking tech and looking at managing innovation in business. We'll be joined throughout the afternoon by a series of expert panellists and keynote speakers for a series of energetic and insightful talks by tech industry leaders like Airbus, Microsoft, Nokia and Spotify among others. On request, you will also have the unique opportunity to exchange with our tech experts from around the globe in individual one-on-one-meetings. | For more information and to register see the Talking Tech event webpage.

New York – Security Token Academy Meet-Up (26 Sep 2019)

The Security Token Academy is hosting a meet-up in New York City, which will involve an informal panel discussion, as well as opportunities to network. Clifford Chance Senior Associate, David G. Adams, will be speaking on the panel. | For more information and to register see the event webpage.

London – Sibos Debrief – Payments Industry Forum (2 Oct 2019)

Clifford Chance will be hosting a payments industry forum event following Sibos 2019, which takes place in London on 23-26 Sep this year. Clifford Chance Partner Simon Gleeson will be moderating The future of banking panel and other members of our market leading payments services team will be at Sibos 2019, with ears open to pick up the very latest market, regulatory and legal issues in the banking, payments and fintech sectors. The following week, on 2 Oct 2019, please join us for a payments industry forum event, where we will update you on what we learned. | For more information and to register see the Talking Tech event webpage.

London – Breakfast Seminar: Financing Tech Companies for Private Debt Funds (20 Oct 2019)

The fast-developing technology sector presents both new opportunities and challenges for private debt providers. Please join us for our next breakfast seminar for private debt funds where we will be discussing the key issues to be considered when lending to, or financing the acquisition of, tech companies. Our panel of experts will discuss the crucial diligence concerns (including in relation to regulated sectors such as financial services) as well as how best to address documentation challenges. | For more information and to RSVP see the event webpage.

This publication does not necessarily deal with every important topic nor cover every aspect of the topics with which it deals. It is not designed to provide legal or other advice. Clifford Chance is not responsible for third party content. Please note that English language translations may not be available for some content.

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