There are different takes when it comes to regulating cryptocurrencies. There are countries such as China that has adamantly blocked crypto-related activities while pushing for their blockchain projects. On the other hand, you have countries such as Japan and South Korea that maximize the technology. But for those countries that have and blockchain technology is Malta.
Malta is spearheading the regulatory changes that can help facilitate the entry of crypto businesses in the country. Since the Virtual Financial Assets Act (VFA) bill is expected to come into effect by next month, the country held its first crypto agent examination.
Because of Malta’s pro-crypto stance, there is a need to fill in jobs within the industry. However, since the industry is still somewhat new, Malta decided to test people’s competencies.
However, the results weren’t satisfactory. Out of the 250 participants, two-thirds of the test takers failed. That is despite the changes made by the organizers to boost the number of people who are going to pass.
Around 250 accountants, auditors, and other financial services professionals took the examination hoping to get accreditation. The exam was organized by the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA). Here, the test takers will first have a short training course.
The examination itself includes multiple choice questions. It makes use of a negative marking system. The MFSA changed the marching scheme in order to boost the passing rate. The first exam only recorded a 39% passing rate. What this means is that they need to pass the examination in order for the professionals to practice, and this has caused frustration among the professionals.
Building Expertise in the Subject Matter
The purpose of the exam is to equip the professionals to be able to feel comfortable when it comes to dealing with the industry. The financial regulator issued a document last month that says a “need to address existing expectations gap, particularly given the inherent risk of this sector”. This document by the MFSA urges that the right competencies are needed in order for professionals to become VFA agents.
Also, the regulator even proposed increment in the regulatory fees and financial requirements, not to mention the compulsory continuous professional education considering the number of changes in the industry.
Crucial for ICOs
ICOs today are in a limbo for a number of reasons. Regulatory changes may even classify some ICOs as securities and therefore should meet the same regulatory requirements such as stocks and other financial instruments.
The VFA agents are crucial to the regulatory changes Malta did. Under the VFA Act, a company that plans to issue an Initial Coin Offering should hire an accredited VFA agent. Here, the VFA agent will liaise with the government on its behalf.
There is no denying that Malta made it easier for crypto businesses. There are exchanges that decided to go to the country because of its crypto-friendly approach. But though Malta as made it conducive for crypto-related businesses to operate within its territory, it is undeniable that there is still a lot of work to be done.