Partly because of a lack of take up, Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is extending the end date of its temporary registrations regime for existing crypto asset businesses to 31 March next year from 9 July.

The extension will allow the firms to continue trading while the FCA continues assessing them.

Factors it is taking into account include a company’s processes to identify and prevent money laundering and counter terrorist financing. The FCA will only register firms where it is confident processes are in place to stop those activities.

The authority noted: “A significantly high number of businesses are not meeting the required standards under the Money Laundering Regulations. This has resulted in an unprecedented number of businesses withdrawing their applications.”

The authority had earlier said it was unable to assess and register all crypto asset businesses due to the complexity and standard of the applications received, and because the coronavirus pandemic had restricted staff’s planned visits to firms.

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