License for Indian Crypto Exchanges

Published:
February 16, 2022
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Proposed bill as for crypto-currency assets and official digital money regulation, submitted for consideration in 2021, suggests henceforth, every crypto exchange operating in India will have an obligation to meet certain criteria, the list of which is quite considerable. In particular, these requirements relate to the minimum capital, accepted management principles and policies, as well as the possession of license for Indian crypto exchanges.

What exactly are the Obligations Imposed on Crypto Exchanges in India?

It is possible that cryptoexchanges will be tasked with requesting special licensing permission from regulation authority in order to conduct commercial activities, plus those related to the trading of shares and cryptoassets. This need, as already noted, arose after special Law was adopted.

Under provisions of the bill, which aims to maintain full control for digital cash, platforms working with cryptocoins will be required to meet the criteria of “adequate quality and suitability of services”. The same applies to other exchanges whose operations are related to such assets.

As well as stock exchanges, cryptocurrency platforms will also have to bring their operations and internal organization in line with a variety of eligibility criteria, in particular with regard to the minimum capital, accepted principles and management policies, and the possession of the license itself, allowing conducting business within the jurisdiction of India.

The regulator’s office may also request a business plan from the company in order to test it for long-term and sustainability. Among other, regulator may require cryptoplatform to follow the practice of KYC – “know your client”. In addition, in order to counter illegal money transferring and other activities of an illegal nature, regulator may ask cryptoexchange to provide information on disclosure mechanisms.

The Procedure for Protecting Activities of Firms and Assistance in Market

In order providing adequate protection for small entrepreneurs, government apparatus also aims to introduce rules by which a minimum threshold is set for amount of investment in virtual currency. Cryptoexchanges will be given a certain period of time to bring their activities in line with the new regime’s eligibility standards.

If the new rules were violated in any way, then the company is required to pay a fine of 200 million rupees, which is equivalent to 2.7 million dollars. Alternatively, the violator faces a prison term of 1.5 years.

Officials say government authorities could also consider potentially allowing the Bombay Stock Exchange and the National Stock Exchange to create cryptowindows, in particular in commodity and currency segments they currently regulate.

Officials are said to have already discussed this with regulators and others who have an interest in these matters. Provided that the government is still aiming to create a separate regulator for the cryptoenvironment, demand for several additional regulators responsible for functioning of other digital assets is also increasing.

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