Ukraine to legalize cryptocurrencies as Virtual Assets Bill passes second reading

Ukraine to legalize cryptocurrencies as Virtual Assets Bill passes second reading

On Wednesday, September 8, the Ukrainian parliament passed the second reading of the Virtual Assets Bill, setting the country on a path to legalizing cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.

The bill, which seeks to legally recognize digital assets and regulate the cryptocurrency space, was supported by 276 deputies, Ukrinform reports. If approved, international blockchain companies will have an opportunity to register and operate in the country. Citizens will also be able to trade, own, and exchange cryptocurrencies.

The proposed law will be enforced by the Ministry of Digital Transformation, although the National Bank of Ukraine and the National Securities and Stock Market Commission might oversee the sector to an extent.

Subsequently, the bill has warranted the formation of a new regulator, the National Virtual Assets Regulatory Service (NVARS) to focus on issuing licenses to crypto companies in the country. However, the financial monitoring of the digital currencies will be conducted by the Financial Action Task Force.

Officials predict that the Virtual Assets Bill could introduce a transparent market for crypto holders to operate.

Alex Bornyakov, Ukraine’s Deputy Minister of Digital Transformation for IT Development opined that:

“Cryptocurrency owners will get several advantages. Because there will be a legal base for cryptocurrencies, they will be able, at least, to protect their virtual fortune if something happens. They also will be entitled to exchange crypto assets and declare them. This process will be completely “transparent.”

He added that there would be a natural market of intermediaries to pay for goods using cryptocurrencies with the law.

The news comes a few days after El Salvador officially adopted Bitcoin as a legal tender; a move that has inspired other countries to make similar decisions.

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