Cyprus SEC chairwoman opens up on the acceptance of blockchain 23125 Demetra Kalogerou
News
Nitin Murali
Sep 15, 2018 at 3:00 AM

Recently, Demetra Kalogerou, Chairwoman, Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC) discussed the island’s engagement towards blockchain and cryptocurrencies, with Finance Magnates, a finance publication.

When asked about what prompted CySEC to set up Fintech Innovation Hub, Kalogerou explained that new products and services will automatically arrive with the use of a new technology.

“The pace of change in financial services means new products and services are coming to market quicker than ever before. The application of new technology to an already complex industry brings with its new supervisory challenges – digitalization is no longer an add-on, but fundamentally embedded in how consumers and investors engage with banking, insurance, payments, asset and wealth management products,” said Kalogerou.

When questioned on the perks provided to the firms joining the innovation hub she said, “We won’t be providing any perks. The Innovation Hub will serve as a communication channel for supervised and non-supervised entities to understand how existing regulation applies to new products or business models, whilst identifying what regulatory frameworks and licensing requirements might need to be established to ensure the safety and security of the end-investor, without stifling innovation.”

However, the hub would offer support and guidance to both regulated and unregulated firms.

“Unlike a regulatory sandbox, the Hub aims to offer support, advice, and guidance to regulated or unregulated firms; not a live or virtual testing of new products and services. It is designed to be a two-way information exchange, too – creating a platform for innovative firms to share ideas about new financial technology at the same time as identifying opportunities for our own regtech innovation. We see it as a two-way street,” she added.

Blockchains are not just used in cryptocurrencies

When the subject was changed towards blockchain, Kalogerou stated that the use of blockchain is not only for cryptocurrencies but also for tracing shareholding certifications, recording transfers in ownership or voting rights or physical assets.

“Blockchain can be used for a variety of applications, not only cryptocurrencies, such as tracing shareholding certifications, recording transfers in ownership or voting rights or physical assets. This means that blockchain gives us new opportunities to rethink how parts of our society work. Whether or not blockchain systems are trustworthy is an interesting question. It is still unclear whether it could overcome the challenges associated with becoming a mainstream tool for financial markets, which inter alia includes legal and regulatory aspects that need to be taken into consideration, such as the legal certainty attached to Blockchain records or settlement finality,” said Kalogerou

See Also:

Nasdaq powered Cryptocurrency Exchange launching in June this year

Fintech firm Bitt inks deal with Curaçao’s central bank to launch local digital currency

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