Lack of Crypto Regulations Alarming, Says Italy’s Stock Market Regulator

Paolo Savona, president of the Commissione Nazionale per le Società e la Borsa (Consob), Italy’s securities regulator, has alarmed about the growing popularity of cryptocurrencies in the absence of firm regulatory standards.

According to Reuters, Savona made this position known when delivering Consob’s annual report on Monday. stating that the lack of clear regulations creates an opportunity for criminals to use cryptocurrencies for illegal activities. According to Savona:

“Without proper supervision, there could be a worsening of the transparency of the market, the basis of legality and the rational choice of (market) operators.”

Despite various research studies indicating that crypto crime only accounts for a small proportion of the global cryptocurrency trade, Savona has joined the chorus of financial regulators pushing the virtual currency crime agenda.

El Salvador’s recent parliamentary vote to adopt Bitcoin (BTC) as legal tender has drawn criticism from various guardians of legacy finances. In the Netherlands, a Dutch official has called for a total ban on cryptocurrencies.

Speaking on CNBC’s Squawk Box on Monday, Mohamed El-Erian, Allianz’s chief economic adviser alluded to to the emerging narrative, calling it “a tug of war between adoption and regulation.”

For Savona, criminals using cryptocurrencies for money laundering and tax evasion are not the only problem. According to the president of Consob, the proliferation of cryptocurrencies poses an existential threat to the ability of central banks to facilitate the sovereign monetary policies of their respective nations.

Related: Dutch Official Calls For A Comprehensive Bitcoin Ban

Given the extent of Savona’s crypto fears, the securities regulator analyzed the slow pace of activities related to cryptocurrency regulations at the European Union level. The Consob boss stated that Italy could be forced to establish its own regulatory framework if the European Union takes too long to develop a set of laws for the entire region.

However, not all developments on the crypto regulation front are negative for the industry. Indeed, reports from India suggest that the authorities have moved away from plans for a total ban towards more nuanced regulations. Even in the Netherlands, Dutch Finance Minister Wopke Hoekstra has spoken out in favor of supervision rather than a ban on cryptocurrencies.