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15 May 2020 / article

DCB calls for crypto service providers to apply for registration

Dutch Central Bank has called on crypto service providers to apply for registration before 18 May 2020, in order to be eligible for the transitional arrangement (overgangsregeling), which entails that activities may be continued until successful completion of the registration.

On 21 April 2020, the Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive Implementation Act, which places crypto service providers under supervision by Dutch Central Bank (De Nederlandsche Bank, DCB) was approved by the Dutch Senate. It is intended that the Act will enter into force on 18 May 2020.

Obligations for crypto service providers

The registration obligation under the Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive Implementation Act applies to legal entities, companies or individuals that provide custodian wallets or services for the exchange between virtual and fiduciary currencies, in a professional capacity or on a commercial basis, in or from the Netherlands. The integrity supervision entails, in short, that crypto service providers have to comply with the provisions of the Dutch Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (Prevention) Act (Wet ter voorkoming van witwassen en financieren van terrorisme) and the Sanctions act 1977 (Sanctiewet 1977), that daily policymakers and co-policymakers will be tested on suitability and trustworthiness and that persons who hold a qualifying holding in a crypto service provider will be tested on trustworthiness.

Transitional arrangement

DCB asked crypto service providers to submit an application for registration before 18 may 2020 in order to be eligible for the statutory six month transition period, which entails that activities may be continued until successful completion of the registration. DCB called upon crypto service providers to apply for registration in a news report and further explained the process in a newsletter. Crypto service providers that fail to submit an application before that date will not be eligible for the transitional arrangement and consequently must discontinue their services.

DCB aims to review the applications and additional assessments (i.e. suitability and trustworthiness assessments) within the six month period. In a newsletter of 11 May 2020, DCB identifies some important aspects in submitting an application for registration. These aspects include ensuring an application is of high quality, which means properly substantiating why the applicant meets certain requirements.