The non-government organization Bitcoin Argentina has presented a draft bill aimed at regulating the cryptocurrency market in a way that upholds decentralization and bolsters public trust.
The proposed legal framework was put forward by Bitcoin Argentina’s president, Ricardo Mihura, at LABITCONF 2023 in Buenos Aires, Argentina’s capital, on November 10. While Bitcoin Argentina had previously opposed cryptocurrency regulation, its advocates now argue that it is necessary to preserve the integrity of blockchain and hold dishonest actors accountable under the law.
“We have always rejected attempts to regulate the crypto economy, but this time we set ourselves the goal of giving a positive response, with only two purposes: preserving decentralization and protecting savings and public trust,” Mihura stated, adding, “We cannot close our eyes to the number of dishonest actors and projects that circulate with the blockchain brand.”
The initial article of the legal framework focuses on categorizing cryptocurrency platforms and service providers into three groups to determine property rights: decentralized, locally centralized or willing to engage with authorities, and globally centralized.
Platforms falling under one of the two centralized categories would be permitted to operate freely, but their customers would be granted “the broadest possible judicial protection,” ensuring the right to claim damages in case of a company’s collapse. It is understood that Argentina’s judiciary will not intervene in the event of failures from decentralized platforms.
Courts will determine whether a cryptocurrency platform is sufficiently decentralized when addressing claims brought by allegedly affected customers.
Mihura emphasized that imposing an outright ban on cryptocurrencies, as attempted by some governments, wouldn’t be effective given the global nature of blockchain, stating, “Not even the United States can effectively prohibit the operation of the unlicensed crypto economy Argentina has no possibility of prohibiting its residents from operating in global environments [so] we believe that it does not make sense to propose a top-down ban and we choose to propose the best that the law can offer to its citizens.”
“This includes those directly responsible and all those who profit in the marketing chain of a fraud, until the final victim,” Mihura added.
Blockchain Argentina’s proposed bill comes one week before Argentina’s presidential run-off election between Sergio Massa, the country’s economy minister, and Javier Milei, an economist turned politician who aims to abolish Argentina’s central bank and adopt the United States dollar.
Argentina is currently grappling with an inflation crisis. Over the past 12 months, the country has recorded the fourth-largest annual inflation rate in the world at 121.7%.
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