Isle of Man Official Announces Permissive ICO Regulations

An official representing the Isle of Man has revealed the British dependent has developed a permissive regulatory framework designed to encourage initial coin offerings. Defying current global trends, the island will seek to encourage and foster the growth of its nascent ICO industry.

The Isle Is Hoping to Attract Companies Seeking to Conduct Initial Coin Offerings

Brian Donegan, head of operations for fintech and digital development at the Isle of Man’s Department of Economic Development, has revealed that the island has been developing a permissive regulatory apparatus designed to encourage the ICO industry. Donegan described the initial coin industry with enthusiasm, stating that “our understanding and analysis of the ICO is that it represents a massive vertical market”.

Isle of Man’s government has long expressed the desire to develop permissive legislation designed to encourage growth in the Island’s blockchain and cryptocurrency industries, announcing plans to develop guidelines for the operation of businesses handling cryptocurrencies in 2014. The Isle of Man government also explored state directed applications for blockchain technology in 2015.

The Isle of Man is a self-governing dependent of the British crown. Despite being a possession of the Britain, the island is not a formal member of the United Kingdom, and has governed itself with relative autonomy since 1866. The United Kingdom is yet to develop a regulatory apparatus regarding bitcoin and ICOs, and it is unclear what the ramifications of a hypothetical UK crackdown on initial coin offerings may be for the Isle of Man.

Numerous Cryptocurrency Start-Ups Have Praised the Isle of Man for It’s Regulatory Apparatus

The isle has been praised for its regulatory apparatus pertaining to cryptocurrencies by a number of blockchain based start-ups. Adam Vaziri, co-founder of Diacle, recently stated that “the Isle of Man is the first jurisdiction we have a lot of respect for… [the Isle of Man] created a regulatory framework for cryptocurrency businesses… that allowed Diacle… to run the first fully compliant public ICO.”

Ross Wilson of bitcoin exchange, Coincorner, has also praised the regulatory requirements for cryptocurrency businesses operating in the British dependent. “Any cryptocurrency exchange operating from the Isle of Man is legally required to follow globally recognized anti-money laundering [AML] and know your client [KYC] legislation… While other jurisdictions may have done something approaching this, the Isle of Man has gone one step further by giving the financial regulator the power to inspect Isle of Man businesses to ensure compliance with these regulations… This gives any cryptocurrency business based on the Isle of Man added legitimacy as they are proven to be following the AML and KYC legislation.”

The Isle of Man has emerged as one of the first jurisdictions to develop a regulatory apparatus for cryptocurrencies explicitly designed to promote ICOs. By contrast, The People’s Bank of China recently moved to suspend all ICOs operating within China, whilst the United States, Canada, Singapore, and Hong Kong have announced that ICOs that distribute unlicensed securities will be subject to the financial regulators of each respective nation.