Poland aims to regulate cryptocurrency trading, with fines 100,000 pln

The new anti-money laundering act has introduced major changes to the cryptocurrency market. The regulations specify who will be able to report and register activities aimed at trading these virtual assets.

– This is a step in the right direction. Virtual currencies were used to conduct transactions in which both parties remained anonymous. The regulator tries to prevent this by identifying where these funds come from – comments Bartosz Michałkowski, director of the Operations Department at NatWest Polska.

The obligation to be entered in the new register of entities operating in the field of virtual currencies is part of the Anti-Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing Act, which entered into force at the end of April. It is an implementation of the provisions of Directive 2018/843 of the European Parliament and of the Council (the so-called AML 5). In the light of the new regulations, entities providing services in the field of currency exchange (e.g. between virtual currencies or between cryptocurrencies and means of payment) will be able to conduct regulated activities only after being entered in the register.

The second necessary condition is to demonstrate a clear criminal record in such areas as crimes against the credibility of documents or business transactions and property interests. This requirement applies to entrepreneurs as well as partners or members of the management board. Pursuant to the Act, the legal form of the activity performed will not matter, as the registration obligation will apply to all entities.

The provisions on activities in the field of virtual currencies will enter into force six months after the announcement of the act, i.e. on November 1 this year. Entrepreneurs who previously dealt with cryptocurrency trading will have another six months to adapt to the new requirements and obtain an entry in the register (May 1, 2022). Article 153b of the Act provides for a fine of PLN 100,000 for activity on the market without registration.

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