The French cryptosphere is lifted. On 24 January, MEPs rejected the bill containing Various provisions for adaptation to European Union law on the economy, health, labour, transport and agriculture (DADUE), an amendment adopted by the Senate which would have imposed from 1um October 2023 to new players wishing to offer crypto-assets on the French market to obtain PSAN approval from the MFA.
Accreditation vs registration, two distinct regimes
The PSAN (digital asset service provider) license contains many more requirements than the simple registration regime, which is the one chosen today by all PSANs. I’m about sixty. No one has yet obtained the qualification (currently optional to practice the profession of PSAN, unlike registration which is compulsory), even if some companies have undertaken to apply for it. The sector believed that this obligation would have significantly slowed down its economy by penalizing new operators not yet enrolled in the PSAN.
MEPs have chosen to vote for another amendment, introduced by Daniel Labaronne (Renaissance), draftsman of the opinion of the Finance Committee of the National Assembly. This offers a new “strengthened” registration procedure. Currently, the simple registration procedure only requires checks relating to the good repute of the managers, their competence and compliance with anti-money laundering measures. Accreditation also requires requirements in terms of capital, insurance (professional indemnity), cyber security and conflict of interest prevention.
“Reinforced” registration, with new obligations
The enhanced registration procedure would be a hybrid of the two regimes, applying to new entrants from 1um January 2024. These would be subject to new requirements. These include the need to disclose their pricing policies, to warn their customers of the risks associated with their products and services, to enter into an agreement with their customers for their digital asset custody services, and to make deposits of their customers on accounts separate from those of the company.
“It is a question of strengthening the framework of the PSANs by subjecting them to some of the obligations which will constitute, tomorrow, common prerequisites for all to comply with European regulations”, explains the explanatory note. In fact, the MiCA regulation, which is expected to come into force in October 2024, will make licensing mandatory for NASPs, with a transitional period until April 2026 for already registered players.
“Select more reliable players” without “closing down the ecosystem”
But shortening the calendar in France was a mistake according to the majority. The government, opposed to the initial amendment by Senator Hervé Maurey, supported that of Daniel Labaronne. “The Government listens to the concerns raised by the bankruptcy of FTX and we welcome the rapporteur’s amendment”declared the Minister Delegate for Digital Jean-Noël Barrot, specifying that the executive would deposit “a sub-amendment aimed at securing savers”.
“Accreditation is currently very difficult to obtain for the SMEs that make up the digital asset sector and who struggle to obtain the required professional indemnity insurance contract. The same problem arises for the requirements in terms of In addition, the same authorities regulators need time to prepare European regulations To date the registration time for a PSAN is on average 10 months, but it is not uncommon for service providers to encounter much longer delays”, justifies Daniel Labaronne. In the current environment, the goal is to “select more reliable players on future registrations, without closing the ecosystem prematurely”.
The DADUE bill, which consists of the transposition of various European directives to adapt national law, must now pass to a joint commission since the texts adopted in the Senate and in the Assembly are different.
Selected for you