In 2019 Australia did a lot of work to create a more peaceful space for cryptocurrencies to thrive and to regulate them while still maintaining their most important appeal – decentralization.
In 2019 it was important for a county to focus on the regulatory aspect of it to figure out a safe way to slowly introduce more of the blockchain technology to the nation while increasing the trust towards the cryptocurrencies and ensuring the crypto fraud was kept at bay. While current regulations don’t guarantee the fail-proof crypto scene it is definitely a step in the right direction for the country. Australia has been taking a lot of these right steps towards creating a crypto-friendly environment. 2019 was definitely an important year for Australia and its journey towards harvesting financial innovations but 2020 will likely be a year that all the efforts made by Australia will finally pay off.
In 2019 Australia for the first time changed up the existing regulations in order to allow blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies to become more mainstream in the country. (Blockchain guide for beginners) While bitcoin was alway quite popular in Australia this year it finally had the chance to gain more legitimacy and attract a brand new demographic. Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies like Ethereum, and bitcoin lite became so popular that they started accepting crypto in shops, entertainment venues and casinos, and obviously increased popularity of bitcoin casino games online is the proof to that. Across various industries, it is becoming more and more normalized to accept payment in bitcoin, or any other mainstream cryptocurrencies and this trend has played into making cryptocurrencies more mainstream and less scary.
Right now Australia is battling with the consequences of terrible bushfires that have spread across the country so its priorities are definitely not in the cryptocurrency industry. But after the damages have been taken care of, the country will definitely resort back to the agenda that has been working continuously to improve the cryptocurrency scene in Australia and to make it more accessible to different groups. Its efforts to do so Australia has created a crypto-friendly atmosphere in the country by first declaring them legal back in 2017, later announcing the implementation of more robust cryptocurrency exchange regulations in 2018.
Last year Australia announced plans to implement new rules on a cryptocurrency exchange, according to which the Digital currency exchanges (DCE), with a business operation located in Australia, must now register with Austrac and meet the government’s AML/CTF (Anti-money laundering/Counter-Terrorism Financing), compliance and reporting obligations. This may seem like on more restriction for cryptocurrencies to keep in mind, but in reality, this was a major step towards earning more trust from the users and towards making crypto into something that can actually become mainstream. Money laundering and terrorism financing are some of the top pressing issues that keep coming up in conversations around cryptocurrencies. And Australia decided to take the approach of eliminating this major threat in order to allow crypto to function normally in Australia while making it as safe as possible. This is a good example of managing innovation that is often associated with a lot of chaos in a way that allows it to retain its most important qualities while making sure that the government isn’t allowing room for any possibly damaging activities.
What is admirable about Australia, in this case, is that it has built new legislation around this technology which most countries fail to do. They want the technology to fit into the already existing regulations and to incorporate it into their economy without any major shifts.
But that is a very ambitious plan that does not seem all that realistic simply because of the nature of cryptocurrencies and the bitcoin technology in general. When we talk about the possibilities that come with bitcoin technology they are made available mostly because of the unregulated, decentralized nature of the technology. Most countries try to put this technology together with other financial institutions that have nothing in common with blockchain infrastructure, simply because they both deal with assets. This sort of approach will not bring positive results and will also stunt the growth of the industry and block any chance of substantial progress being made in his direction. Australia set a good example for all the countries wanting to promote blockchain and to make it mainstream, without allowing chaos into their economies.
This 2020 year is full of opportunities to see the results from all the hard work that went into the industry in 2019. While the world is facing natural disasters, political tensions and overall turbulent times, the industry might have to take a back seat for a while. But after the world returns to its status quo, the conversations around cryptocurrencies will likely continue.