Crypto Needs Cohesive Regulation – A Look at Europe’s MiCA

Utility token refers to crypto-assets that are only intended to provide access to a good or a service supplied by its issuer. NOTE! Outside the scope of MiCA are: DeFI protocols, pure NFTs, CBDCs, security tokens or other crypto-assets that qualify as financial instruments according to MiFID II. Licensing. MiCA introduces licensing requirements for crypto-asset service providers, issuers of asset-referenced tokens and issuers of electronic money tokens. In general, CASP will trigger the licensing requirements, unless they are already a licensed credit institution under MiFID. As mentioned before, even with an existing license, the company would still need to notify the competent authorities about its intention to offer crypto-asset services. Supervision. At the member state level, competent authorities will hold the responsibility for overseeing CASPs and ensuring adherence to the stipulations outlined in MiCA. CASPs with an active user base exceeding 10 million will fall under the category of “Significant CASPs.” While these Significant CASPs will continue to be monitored by the relevant competent authorities, the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) will be vested with an “intervention power.” This authority empowers ESMA to enact measures that either prohibit or restrict the provision of crypto-asset services by CASPs, particularly when there are perceived threats to market integrity, investor protection, or financial stability.