Lawmakers in the European Union on Thursday voted 517-38 in favor of a new crypto licensing regime, Markets in Crypto-Assets (MiCA), with 18 abstentions, making it the first major jurisdiction in the world to introduce a comprehensive crypto law.
The European Parliament also voted 529-29 in favor of a separate law known as the Transfer of Funds regulation, which requires crypto operators to identify their customers in a bid to halt money laundering, with 14 abstentions.
The vote follows a Wednesday debate in which lawmakers largely supported plans to make crypto wallet providers and exchanges seek a license to operate across the bloc, and require issuers of stable coins tied to the value of other assets to maintain sufficient reserves.
The European Commission’s Mairead McGuinness described the vote as a “world first” for crypto rules.
“We’re protecting consumers and safeguarding financial stability and market integrity,” McGuinness said. “The rules will start applying from next year.”
In a statement released by the European Parliament, Stefan Berger, the lawmaker who led negotiations on the law, said the rules put the EU “at the forefront of the token economy.”