Banco de España (BdE) has asked Spanish banks for information about their marketing plans for crypto products and services. A BdE spokesperson told this newspaper that there is no supervisory intention and that the request is only intended to begin to understand the appetite of Spanish entities for the commercialization of this type of products. This is information focused on the approval of the Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on crypto asset markets (MiCA).
Bank of Spain asks about crypto plans
The same source indicated that the request for information, which covers until 2024, is part of the horizontal work carried out on the evolution of the entities’ business model. As well as the impact that the ongoing process of digitization and financial innovation may have.
Bank of Spain opens cryptocurrency services to traditional banks
On October 20, the Bank of Spain opened a Registration in which commercial banks and all those entities that offer products and services related to crypto assets to their clients must register. The Record It is part of the second additional provision of Law 10/2010, of April 28, on the prevention of money laundering and terrorist financing. Therefore, it is a matter of complying with this rule, which requires a registration of cryptocurrency service providers.
The BdE specifies that “it is the responsibility of the Bank of Spain to register natural and legal persons who offer or provide in Spain virtual currency exchange services for fiduciary currency and electronic wallet custody services. Natural persons whose base, direction or management of these activities is located in Spain, and legal persons established in Spain that provide these services ”.
Requests will be made public on the web
At present there is no public information on the applications submitted, because the Bank of Spain has three months to resolve. However, the same source assured that the applications will be made public on the web as they are approved. The updates will be periodic, but this periodicity is still unknown.
Ana Botín assures that Santander bank will offer bitcoin to its clients with ETFs
The presentation of information to the BdE of Spanish banks about their future plans regarding cryptocurrencies, in principle, would not oblige them to register in the registry set up by the Bank of Spain. Unless they start offering services before the deadline set by BdE. For example, Banco Santander, as its president announced in an interview with Bloomberg in October, is about to offer bitcoin to its clients through exchange-traded investment funds (ETFs). This newspaper asked the bank about its intention to register, but preferred not to comment on the matter.
In the case of BBVA, which already offers the sale of bitcoin, a spokesperson for the entity assured that, for now, its services are provided from Switzerland, where they comply with the applicable regulation. “When extending the service to other geographies, we will comply with the steps required by regulation at all times,” they assured. Regarding native crypto companies, a spokesperson for Bit2Me, the most popular cryptocurrency exchange in Spain, assured that they had already registered.
In the section of foreign platforms that offer crypto services in Spain, Coinmotion, of Finnish origin, confirmed to this newspaper that although their license allows them to offer services throughout Europe, they will be registered.
Regarding MiCA, European MP Eva Kaili recently said in a forum organized by Coindesk that the new regulation will allow companies to operate throughout the EU. Regarding the times of MiCA, Kaili assured that there is still a long way to go. It is still passing its first readings in parliament and consultations between parliament and the EU council are lacking, he explained.