The Circle CEO Jeremy Allaire will be appearing at the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee hearing on blockchain and cryptocurrencies today. He plans to tell the US lawmakers that they are falling behind other countries in exploiting a new asset class.
The US isn’t moving fast
In written testimony, Allaire said that lack of clear crypto regulations in the US could make the country lose valuable business. He wrote,
“The result of the uncertain and restrictive regulatory environment has led many digital asset projects and companies to domicile outside of the United States and to block US persons and businesses from accessing products and technologies.”
Allaire noted that his company Circle has already started the process of moving their international-focused products to a more sympathetic jurisdiction in Bermuda, where it will function as a licensed entity. Bermuda already has a Digital Asset Business Act that is helpful for companies like Circle. Allaire even went on to say that other countries should emulate Bermuda’s handling of crypto assets.
Cryptos are a new asset class
The CEO continued to argue that cryptocurrencies are a new asset class. He said that it is crucial to allow innovators to grow and develop their projects in the US.
“Congress should adopt national policies that define and establish digital assets as a new asset class and develop appropriate rules and exemptions for digital assets. This will require legislation that likely changes our existing commodities, securities, and banking laws, among others.”
The Senate committee hearing is the latest in the line of Congressional hearings on Capitol Hill that are marking attendance from top crypto companies. In the middle of July, Facebook executives appeared before two separate committees discussing their new cryptocurrency project Libra.
The lawmakers are afraid that the scale of Facebook’s operations could be a threat- especially in case of money laundering and terrorist financing. However, the executive suggested that the US is missing out on an opportunity to capitalize on the emerging asset class.
This week, Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse wrote an open letter to the Congress, mimicking the sentiments. He said that the US has to take steps now to remove ambiguity on crypto regulations. Congress hasn’t taken any decision on the state of digital currencies in the country. However, the overall sentiment hasn’t tilted in the positive direction yet.