Bitcoin Ban Excluded From EU Regulatory Proposal (For Now)

The new version of the bill on digital asset markets in the EU will not include a controversial clause to ban cryptocurrencies using the Proof-of-Work consensus mechanism, according to the German publication BTC-ECHO.

A new version of the European Parliament's draft MiCA compromise reflects that a ban on Bitcoin in Europe would be out of the question, as the responsible committee removed the controversial paragraph from the draft MiCA. However, the report has not yet been voted on in committee.

The report was provided on Tuesday, March 1 by the German media outlet BTC-ECHO, which pointed out via Twitter

“A #Bitcoin ban in is off the table. The responsible committee has canceled the removal of the controversial paragraph from the draft. reported @DanielHoppmann.”

Subsequently, Stefan Berger, a member of the deputy office of the chairman of the committee responsible for economy and currency (ECON), confirmed that a ban on Bitcoin in Europe would be out of the question, due to the fact that the responsible committee deleted the controversial paragraph from the MiCA draft. :

“The paragraph is no longer in the text. The report has not yet been voted on in committee. In this vote, we will see where the majorities are. The decision has not yet been made."

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A resounding change to the regulatory proposal

Recently Berger exposed that the discussion on MiCA indicated that the “individual passages of the draft” could be “misinterpreted” and understood as a prohibition, which “would be fatal” for the European Union.

The draft was originally supposed to be decided on Monday, February 28, but according to reports, the process where the Proof-of-Work (PoW) cryptocurrency mining ban would be voted on was suspended.

In a copy of the latest version of the bill obtained by The Block, the redacted portion of the bill stated:

As of January 1, 2025, crypto-assets issued, offered or admitted to trading in the Union will not rely on or rely on environmentally unsustainable consensus mechanisms. The consensus mechanisms must comply with minimum standards of environmental sustainability”.

Following the project's presentation, opponents argued that it would amount to a de facto ban on Bitcoin and Ethereum mining in Europe. However, Stefan Berger noted:

“It has been confirmed that there was a majority in favor of postponing the MiCA vote. The reason was the Proof-of-Work issue. Negotiations have now resumed. We now want MiCA to be approved by the EU Parliament as quickly as possible; Finally, a tripartite dialogue will follow”.

Berger's office stated that the date of the vote would be "in two or four weeks, on March 14 or early April", after a three-way dialogue between the EU Commission, Parliament, and member states.

Subsequently, the Commission will assess the implementation of Parliament's draft.

Read also: US Government May Ban Bitcoin, Billionaire Ray Dalio Says

Christine Lagarde asks for speed

Amid the discussions, European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde called for speed in drafting crypto regulation in Europe.

Lagarde urged lawmakers to pass a regulatory framework on cryptocurrencies, due to the potential use of cryptocurrencies by Russia to evade some of the sanctions established after the invasion of Ukraine.

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