February 16, 2018 the authority for the supervision of financial market authority Switzerland (FINMA) became the first regulator, which is officially published
fairly detailed guidelines for the conduct of the ICO, to determine how the Swiss laws will apply to the ICO. The Swiss move is an important precedent for regulators around the world, the choice of which small – to prohibit dissemination of technology, as did South Korea and China
or to follow the path of innovation and formalize their status, as did Switzerland.
It can be expected that other countries will soon follow this example. Rather liberal regulation is being developed in Gibraltar and Canada, Australia, UK, Singapore, Estonia and Spain also repeatedly stated their intention to legislate the status of the ICO. The Swiss move also opens up great opportunities for the European Union, which may use as the basis for regulation in the country, to improve it and approve for all members. The UK is also moving in the right direction – she has all the necessary infrastructure (as in Switzerland) to become the center of development of ICO.
The Principles Of Switzerland
Here are the basic five principles, which are emphasized in the new guidelines issued by the financial regulator of the country:
First of all, no need for new regulation. The existing rules are enough to regulate the tokens/coins and cryptocurrencies. Therefore, FINMA correctly klassificeret tokens/coins cryptocurrency based on their use and the rights associated with them. Then, the controller determines when and how the provisions of the Law on securities and Law on anti-money laundering (AML).
FINMA klassificeret tokens on the four types of payment tokens (such as crypto-currencies), tool tokens tokens event and hybrid tokens (with characteristics of more than one type). Payment tokens are not securities and they are not subject to the relevant legislation. However, they are subject to the Law against money laundering. Tool tokens most are not securities, the investors should be able to use them already during the ICO. This means that by the time of the fundraising project should function. However, if the token falls within at least one characteristic of the investment, it will be treated as securities and regulated accordingly. As tool tokens are not means of payment regulations do not apply to them. The tokens-the shares are always considered to be securities and subject to the securities Laws of Switzerland, the laws for combating money laundering do not apply to them. Hybrid tokens are evaluated in each case.
All of the above only applies to tokens that already exist at the time ICO. All tokens issued after the fundraiser, are considered as securities. Thus, companies should avoid pre-sales and postprimary token, not to get under the securities laws.
FINMA has also provided a detailed questionnaire that must be filled out by the Issuer ICO to request an evaluation of the FINMA regarding the status of the scheduled token. For the consideration of each case, the regulator charges a fee.
Compliance with AML regulations can be easily achieved by the recruitment of representatives of services of financial intermediaries, which ensure compliance with current legislation the ICO.
Obviously, given the rapid growth of the industry ICO FINMA will continue to Supplement its guidelines to provide a reliable legal environment for IPOs tokens. Undoubtedly, this a balanced and positive approach to the management of multi-billion dollar industry to attract a number of innovative startups, and will be an example for other global regulators.