EU Parliament Indefinitely Postpones Proof-of-work Ban Proposal

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  • The EU parliament this week voted to indefinitely delay a vote on banning proof-of-work cryptocurrencies
  • Factions of the EU Parliament had requested that proof-of-work coins, including Bitcoin, be banned from sale
  • A majority vote saw the controversial section removed from the Markets in Crypto Assets regulatory package

The EU Parliament has indefinitely postponed a vote on banning the proof-of-work consensus mechanism in the bloc following an international outcry from the crypto community. A draft of the Markets in Crypto Assets (MiCA) regulatory package, which would have prohibited cryptocurrency companies in the EU from offering the sale and custody of proof-of-work cryptocurrencies, was originally supposed to be decided on Monday but the majority of members voted on indefinitely suspending the action instead, leaving the plan in limbo.

Bill Would Have Banned Bitcoin From Sale in EU

Proof-of-work cryptocurrencies, which include Bitcoin, Dogecoin, and Litecoin, have come under increasing scrutiny in the past couple of years over the environmental implications of the way in which they are mined. This has resulted in certain factions of the EU Parliament, notably the Left, Greens, and Social Democrats, pushing through proposed legislation to ban their sale and usage in the EU:

In particular, they [the crypto service providers] may not facilitate the purchase or trading of such crypto assets and may not offer custody services for such crypto assets.

The report triggered understandably strong reactions from the Bitcoin space, resulting in a vote on the proposed ban being postopend, according to Stefan Berger of the Deputy Office of the Chairman of the Economics and Currency who told BTC-ECHO.

It has been confirmed that there was a majority in favor of postponing the MiCA vote. The reason was the question of proof-of-work. Negotiations have now resumed. We now want to get the MiCA through the EU Parliament as quickly as possible. Finally, a trilogue will follow.

Proof-of-work Section Stripped From Revised Bill

As a result, a new MiCA proposal has been tabled that does away with the controversial ruling. Berger later told Coindesk that “It is crucial for me that the MiCA report is not interpreted as a de facto ban on Bitcoin.”

While the proposal is still theoretically on the table, there is no date pending for discussions on reviving it.