Argentina’s Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) has effectively ordered all financial institutions in the nation’s borders to “report operations performed with virtual coins,” according to a resolution (Resolution 300/2014) passed on the 4th of July.
The idea is to prevent both money laundering and terrorism financing, and it comes during a time in which attention on bitcoin and other digital currencies is at an all-time high.
The FIU wants regulated financial institutions to “pay particular attention” to the risks these digital currencies pose and subsequently carry out “reinforced monitoring” for large users of the currencies.
It’s unclear how these financial institutions will be able to keep an eye on these transactions, however.
According to José Sbattella, who leads the FIU, these so-called “virtual coins” are a “digital representation of value that can be digital commerce and whose functions are to provide a medium of exchange, and/or a unit of account, and/or a store of value,” but reminds that they are by no means legal tender and are not backed by any central bank.
According to Argentinian entrepreneur Franco Amati, the set of rules don’t change a terrible lot aside from treating digital currency like any other electronic means of making payments.
Amati looks on the positive side by suggesting that the Resolution now reduces uncertainty for these financial institutions, who now have a better idea of how to better deal with this changing financial technology.
Meanwhile, financial analyst Carlos Maslatón said that the only good thing about the resolution is that the Argentinian government to some extent is now recognizing bitcoin as a currency.
This isn’t the first time Argentina has addressed the matter of bitcoin. Back in late May, the country’s Central Bank warned of the risks of getting involved with digital currency, which no surprise included the possibility of money laundering and crime financing.
Click here to view full article