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1 April 2021

Access to banking services : crypto companies still deadlocked

Auteur
William O’Rorke

Jounal du Net — 01.04.2021.

While companies in the crypto sector are now under the supervision of the Autorité des marchés financier (AMF) and subject to anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing obligations under the control of the Autorité de contrôle prudentiel et de résolution (ACPR), they still encounter deleterious difficulties in using banking services.

William O’Rorke was interviewed by Charlie Perreau for the Journal du Net on the reasons for these persistent blockages.

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Access to banking services: crypto companies still deadlocked, JDN (FR)

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William O’Rorke regrets that despite the entry into force of the digital asset-based provider regime, being supervised by the AMF and the ACPR, which should have reassured banking partners, did not facilitate account openings.

 

« On the other hand, players without DASP status are not subject to the same requirements, which may indeed worry the banking industry. “I understand that it might scare a banking institution to open a bank account to a crypto company but a scam won’t apply for the DASP regime,” points out the lawyer William O’Rorke specialized in digital assets regulation. »

« French banks have written off crypto. When a company works in this sector, the banks refuse to open an  account. The truth is that being a DASP doesn’t change anything for them, laments William O’Rorke, who nevertheless admits that the sector presents some risks. »

He also points out that to date, the procedure put in place by the legislator to facilitate relations between banks and crypto players is far too complex and cumbersome to have any effect. 
« The majority of crypto companies have been refused several or even a dozen time have access to banking services. The Pacte law had however introduced a reinforced right to an account (for holders of a DASP registration only). But to do so, you have to hang on. “The procedure takes six months. And the bank can drag out the file. It is therefore unworkable in practice,” says William O’Rorke. »
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