Around the world there is an ongoing battle against scams in the crypto world, especially when it comes to ICOs. Scores of the ICOs that are launched turn out to be scams, with the founders running away with millions in their pockets. In these cases, investors can’t do anything due to the lack of regulation in the ICO markets – and the fact scam ICOs list in jurisdictions where regulations are very lax or non-existent. However, the Bahamas is taking a stance against scam ICOs and creating a set of strict regulations designed to weed out the scams.
The Bahamas is Making Itself Known in Crypto
The first thing people think of when they hear “Bahamas” is likely Halle Berry sipping a cocktail from a coconut on a golden sandy beach – not crypto regulations. Yet, the nation is trying to make itself known as a crypto island with sweeping new regulations. The chain of islands has been hard at work regulating Bitcoin and the crypto world as a whole. Now it’s taking the next steps to create ICO regulations, as well as protect the industry from crimes like tax evasion and money laundering, along with market volatility and manipulation – one of the biggest problems plaguing the cryptocurrency space.
France Paving the Way
The Bahamas could take a leaf out of France’s playbook. Recently, France created sweeping ICO regulations designed to stamp out everything the crypto world hates about ICOs – scammers and fake projects. The Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF) will issue a rubber stamp of approval for ICO projects that meet its rigorous standards, creating a UCITS like structure for ICOs. The Bahamas could seek to create ICO regulations that follow a similar suit – after all, France’s new ICO regulations have been lauded by the crypto world.
Banning ICOs All Together?
An alternative could be to ban ICOs all together like South Korea. Late last year South Korea issued a blanket ban on all ICOs, and it’s looking set to renew the ban for another year. It imposed the ban to block any scams arising from the ICO market in the country, as well as to give the regulatory authorities more time to figure out how best to regulate the market. This is an extreme approach to take, and quite frankly it’s also a negative approach as well. The Bahamas is looking to welcome ICOs and cryptos, so this isn’t a great option if it wants to move forward.
We could see the first new changes to the country’s Bitcoin-friendly legislation roll out in early 2019, so ICOs could soon be regulated in the country. If the Bahamas manages to regulate ICOs, we could see a new wave of ICOs applying for regulation and bank accounts in the country.