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Global Weekly Fintech Round-up

23 September 2019

23 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.

Please click here to subscribe to future editions of the round-up.

CLIFFORD CHANCE PUBLICATIONS AND MATERIALS

Clifford Chance video – London Perspectives Series: Facebook's cryptocurrency Libra - the challenges ahead | Discussion by Peter Chapman, Caroline Dawson, Simon Gleeson and Phillip Souta (Clifford Chance London) and Steven Gatti (Clifford Chance Washington) on the UK, US and EU legal and regulatory hurdles and the policy considerations that remain to be addressed for Libra and its crypto competitors.

Talking Tech article – France will block Libra in Europe: French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said that France will block the development of Libra in Europe as it currently stands.

Spotlight: Stablecoins

Clifford Chance, in collaboration with R3, are delighted to announce the launch of our jointly produced paper 'Stablecoins: A Global Overview of Regulatory Requirements in Asia Pacific, Europe, the UAE and the US'. The paper was produced as a chapter to be included in the Global Legal Insights publication 'Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Regulation 2020' which will be launched in the coming weeks.

This article describes some of the key legal and regulatory issues raised by the various forms of stablecoins internationally, with a focus on collateralised stablecoins. These issues are receiving greater scrutiny in leading international financial markets, with regulators and policy makers around the globe closely examining Facebook’s "beguiling but treacherous" Libra project.

Also, read our brief snapshot article discussing some of the key themes.

GLOBAL LEGAL AND REGULATORY UPDATES

International

  • (19 Sep 2019) International Monetary Fund blog post on the rise of stablecoins, their benefits, risks and regulatory issues.
  • (18 Sep 2019) The Bank of International Settlements (BIS) and Hong Kong Monetary Authority have signed an operational agreement to cooperate on the Innovation Hub Centre in Hong Kong | Press release | See the table of fintech cooperation agreements for more information and a full list of international agreements.
  • (18 Sep 2019) International Capital Market Association updated primary markets technology mapping directory, which compares the key features and capabilities of 28 technology solutions available to automate all or part of the process of issuing debt securities. | Press release.
  • (16 Sep 2019) BIS working paper on embedding supervisory regulation into blockchain finance.
  • (16 Sep 2019) BIS hosted senior officials from public authorities around the world, as well as representatives from Facebook's Libra, to discuss the policy and regulatory issues posed by the emergence of stablecoin initiatives backed by financial institutions and large technology companies. | Press release.
  • (12 Sep 2019) International Swaps and Derivatives Association legal guidelines for smart derivatives contracts, focusing on collateral management.

Africa

Nigeria:         

  • (28 Aug 2019) Securities and Exchange Commission's Fintech Roadmap Commission report on the current application of fintech in the Nigerian market, potential opportunities and challenges and the Commission's recommendations.

Americas

Uruguay:     

  • (11 Sep 2019) Bill to promote entrepreneurship (in Spanish) approved by Parliament. The bill contains an article which regulates collective financing or crowdfunding platforms.

US:  

  • (18 Sep 2019) Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announces it has charged ICOBox and its founder Nikolay Evdokimov for unregistered offering and broker activity | Press release | SEC complaint.
  • (13 Sep 2019) Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control announces sanctions against North Korean groups involved in cyberhacking. The groups are alleged to have stolen US$ 571 million in cryptocurrency alone from five exchanges in Asia between January 2017 and September 2018, which was potentially used to fund ballistic missile programs. | Updated Special Designated Nationals list | Press release.

APAC

Hong Kong:

  • (18 Sep 2019) BIS and Hong Kong Monetary Authority have signed an operational agreement to cooperate on the Innovation Hub Centre in Hong Kong | Press release | See the table of fintech cooperation agreements for more information and a full list of international agreements.

Japan:

  • (6 Sep 2019) Financial Services Agency Vice Minister for International Affairs, Ryozo Himino, speech on Facebook's cryptocurrency project and the supervisory oversight of cryptoassets.

Europe

EU:  

  • (17 Sep 2019) European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority establishes a consultative expert group to consider digital ethics in insurance. | Press release
  • (17 Sep 2019) European Central Bank executive board member, Benoît Cœuré, speech on digital challenges to the international monetary and financial system.
  • (13 Sep 2019) EU Parliament article on the potential disruptive impact of Facebook's cryptocurrency project on the EU financial system.

Germany:    

  • (18 Sep 2019) Federal Government blockchain strategy (in German), which, amongst other things, seeks to prevent privately-issued stablecoins from becoming parallel currencies | Press release (in German).
CLIFFORD CHANCE EVENTS    

London – Breakfast Roundtable – Foreign investments in cutting-edge tech: pure business or a national security matter? (25 Sep 2019)
Non-European entities, including investors, are a common and welcome part of business in Europe. When it comes to investments in cutting-edge technology, however, the picture becomes less clear. Clifford Chance will be hosting a breakfast roundtable on this subject in conjunction with the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI). Lord George Robertson, former NATO Secretary-General and former UK Defence Secretary, and Jenine Hulsmann, Partner, Clifford Chance, will be in conversation with Simon Nixon, Chief Leader Writer, The Times. | This event is by invitation only, for more information 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):
Sibos 2019
takes place in London on 23-26 Sep 2019 and Clifford Chance will be present to pick up the very latest market, regulatory and legal issues in the banking, payments and fintech sectors. Clifford Chance Partner Simon Gleeson will be moderating 'the future of banking' panel and Peter Chapman, Partner and co-head of the Clifford Chance fintech practice, will be presenting on stablecoins at the R3 exhibition stand. Please contact fintech@cliffordchance.com to find out more. The following week, at 4pm on 2 Oct 2019, Clifford Chance will also be hosting a Sibos debrief event at our London offices. | To register your interest in attending please fill out the event invite

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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