Switzerland: New blockchain law comes into force this week
Switzerland passed a new blockchain law in record time last year. It will be implemented in two phases, the first of which started on 1 February.
On Monday, the first part of Switzerland’s blockchain law on corporate reform came into force. It was only in September 2020 that the Alpine country’s parliament passed an expanded regulatory framework for domestic crypto and blockchain technology. A move that has already met with much praise from industry representatives.
According to a report by Swissinfo, the implementation of the new regulatory law, which took place in absolute record time, will further help improve Switzerland’s burgeoning crypto and blockchain scene. The process is divided into two phases. Company law reforms already apply from 1 February. Improvements to the financial market infrastructure will then be effective from the beginning of August. According to Bitcoin Machine market observers, this will open the doors to a fully regulated cryptocurrency and digital securities industry in Switzerland. The goal is to let all participants know where they stand and to fully inform them about the risks.
With these new registered rights, it is clear that you have legal certainty. If they are properly transferred on the blockchain, the new owner who holds them in his wallet is definitely the owner of these rights.
Coindesk quotes Alexander Vogel, partner at the Swiss law firm Meyerlustenberger Lachenal (MLL). Of course, those responsible are hoping for new advantages for the financial markets. These are supposed to consist of faster trading, lower costs and a broader product range.
Several banks take advantage of new legislation immediately
Three companies (the banks SEBA and Sygnum as well as Crypto Finance) have already made announcements on 1 February that are directly related to the new legislation. Crypto Finance has been granted a securities house licence for its crypto brokerage division by the Swiss financial regulator FINMA. The crypto service provider, which handled over CHF 1 billion in trades last year, can now offer its clients trading in a new type of digital securities. These include company shares and potentially alternative assets such as tokenised real estate, luxury goods and collectibles.
The first reaction from SEBA and Sygnum, the banks that received a FINMA licence in 2019, was also not long in coming. Both also immediately announced their first digital assets. Sygnum has tokenised a number of Fine Wine Capital’s premium wines on its Desygnate platform, which was launched last year. A number of other companies are ready to issue digital assets through the bank, including real estate and shares in an electric car manufacturer.