EU Implements Sanctions Regulations, Impacts Crypto Sector

Azeez Mustapha


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The European Parliament moved forward in tightening regulations on cryptocurrencies implicated in violating or circumventing EU sanctions.

With 543 votes in favor, 45 against, and 27 abstentions recorded, the European Parliament recently moved forward with new regulations aimed at curbing violations and circumventions of EU sanctions.

This action reinforces the EU’s stance on digital assets like cryptocurrencies, emphasizing the need for a unified approach and establishing minimum penalties for infractions.EU sanctions may include measures such as freezing assets (including crypto-assets), travel bans, arms embargoes, and sectoral restrictions.

However, enforcement varies among member states due to differing definitions and penalties for violations.

The newly introduced legislation sets forth standardized definitions for infractions, covering scenarios such as failing to freeze assets, disregarding travel restrictions or arms embargoes, transferring funds to sanctioned individuals, or engaging in business with state-owned entities of sanctioned nations.

Providing financial services or legal advice in violation of these sanctions is also deemed punishable under EU law.

EU Intensifies Enforcement of Sanctions
The EU directive aims to strengthen sanctions enforcement across member states by introducing criminal penalties of up to five years’ imprisonment for violators. This move is intended to enhance EU sanctions enforcement efforts.

Additionally, companies found in breach of sanctions are set to face significant fines, with judges empowered to impose penalties based on global turnover or fixed amounts. This decision is primarily aimed at combating forum shopping, where differing penalties lead to seeking out lenient jurisdictions.
EU Implements Sanctions Regulations, Impacts Crypto SectorFurthermore, with the implementation of this directive, the EU is taking steps to address negligent trade in arms or dual-use items, expanding punitive measures beyond intentional violations. The initiative also focuses on harmonizing enforcement practices across EU countries, ensuring consistent and robust penalties for violations of EU sanctions.

Sophia IN ‘T VELD from the Renew Europe Group Shares Insights
After the EU’s new rules directive was voted on, rapporteur Sophie in ‘t Veld, a member of the Renew Europe Group, a liberal pro-European political group, emphasized the necessity of addressing criminal activities exploiting European law for broader societal benefits.

Underscoring the importance of eliminating forum shopping, Sophie also highlighted the importance of appropriate punitive measures for these violators and offenders.

While acknowledging that not all loopholes could be addressed with this directive, Sophie highlighted the European Parliament’s unified approach, demonstrating robust support for the initiative.

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Azeez Mustapha

Azeez Mustapha is a trading professional, currency analyst, signals strategist, and funds manager with over ten years of experience within the financial field. As a blogger and finance author, he helps investors understand complex financial concepts, improve their investing skills, and learn how to manage their money.

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