UK looks to adopt stablecoins as legal tender, to mint NFT

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The UK is taking this and other steps as it looks to position itself as a global hub for crypto-asset technology innovation, Economic Secretary to the Treasury said at the UK Fintech Week 2022.

The UK is set to bring stablecoins within its regulatory framework on electronic payments, opening the assets to further adoption across the country.

The plans came to light on Monday, highlighted by a government official during the InnFin Global Finance Summit event in London.

According to Economic Secretary to the Treasury John Glen, the government is seeking appropriate and actionable steps that should put the UK at the forefront of crypto innovation. 

The government wants to see the country become a “global hub” for crypto technology and investment, Glen said.

And one of the steps involves the gradual fine-tuning of the country’s regulatory guidelines so that stablecoins become a legal payment option for consumers. These steps will also be tailored toward supporting stablecoin issuers and service providers.

A Royal Mint NFT by summer

The Finance Ministry’s recommendations also include the realization that growth within the digital asset space could provide a major boost to consumer choice. As such, UK’s government is eyeing a new regulatory approach that can support not just the stablecoin sector, but other sectors within the broader digital assets markets.

If crypto technologies are going to be a big part of the future, then we, the UK, want to be in,” Glen said at the UK Fintech Week 2022.

Plans to have stablecoins brought within the UK’s regulatory environment have been coming since last year. However, there’s a new pace to the whole idea.

On Monday, HM Treasury (UK’s Economic and Finance Ministry) announced that Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak had asked the Royal Mint to create an NFT and issue it by summer.

Other major plans around crypto from the British government include wider consultations around decentralised autonomous organisations (DAOs) and decentralised finance (DeFi). For the latter, the key considerations are around DeFi loans and staking.

According to the finance ministry, the new legislation forms part of the broader goal to have a Financial Market Infrastructure Sandbox in place by 2023.

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