We’re starting 2023 with better perspectives for cryptocurrencies. However, new regulations are raining for the sector worldwide —especially after the FTX fiasco. This time, it’s the turn of Italy, the United Kingdom, and Israel to bring more taxes and rules for the crypto industry.
By the end of 2022, Italy’s Senate approved the next national budget with a bad surprise for A digital currency running on a blockchain and built with cryptography. Contrary to central-bank issued currency, cryptocurrency issuance rules are... investors. They included a new 26% tax applicable to capital gains on crypto-asset trading over 2,000 euros. On the contrary, tax deductions may apply if losses exceeded the same amount during the taxable year.
Additionally, as an incentive to declare previous years, they’re offering a “substitute tax” of 3.5% plus a 0.5% penalty for each year. Compared to other European countries, the established 26% could be considered high for investors. For example, there are lower crypto taxes in Norway (22%), Estonia (20%), Spain (19%), UK (20%), Czech Republic (15%), Switzerland (7.8%), and Germany (even 0%).
Meanwhile, the British National Crime Agency (NCA) is creating a new unit specialized in crypto-related crimes. Dubbed “NCCU Crypto Cell,” they’re already looking for a cryptocurrency expert to join their team in the UK. The unit is briefly described in the job offer:
“The NCCU Crypto Cell will be dedicated to a proactive cryptocurrency remit with the right tools and capabilities to target UK based subjects along with supporting colleagues with specialist advice and guidance (…) The role will support existing and new investigations where specialist cryptocurrency experience is required along with taking a proactive lead in identifying targets for further development.”
The creation of this division is no wonder. According to Chainalysis, hackers stole over $2 billion in crypto only during the first half of 2022. The total amount must be even higher so far.
Beyond Italy and UK, crypto comes to Israel
The Americas and Europe are advancing relentlessly in cryptocurrency regulation, but that’s still not the case for all countries. Israel has established some rules in the past, but not many of them. Now, they’re starting the year with a new crypto regulation proposal by the Israel Securities Authority (ISA).
On the draft, we can note that they’re considering the benefits and risks of crypto assets for their nation. They see them as a potential tool for financial growth, but not without risks. Besides, they estimate that over 200,000 Israelis are investing in cryptocurrencies. Likewise, around 150 crypto companies are operating in the territory. This is why they deem it necessary to apply further rules in the sector.
With this in mind, they’re proposing amendments to the existing securities laws to include more detailed definitions of digital assets. More specifically, they will try to differentiate between tokens that can be treated as securities (like ICO-related tokens) and coins that won’t. This could be a slow process, but we’ll likely see more updates this year.
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