According to the Washington Post, a group of U.S.-based cryptocurrency projects and companies will be forming a lobby in Washington D.C. The lobbying group will be the first of its kind to represent the new blockchain industry and might be necessary to convince legislators to pass more crypto-friendly laws and regulations.
In a political environment that is still largely ignorant of crypto-related enterprises, the lobbying group is an industry first in pushing for crypto’s acceptance in the upper halls of American governance.
The new lobbying group will be called the Blockchain Association and includes such giants as such Coinbase, Protocol Labs, the Digital Currency Group, and Polychain Capital. Other smaller-scale entrepreneurs are expected to be a part of this new push and the group will be based in Washington D.C. The goal of the Blockchain Association will be to represent mainstream crypto-related companies and projects, pushing for their increasing acceptance within the political system. Therefore, the group will be primarily focused on policy issues and the current tax law environment which has been confusing for investors, to say the least.
The Blockchain Association will also be working closely with lawmakers on know-your-customer requirements and anti-money laundering laws. The group wishes to see cryptocurrencies fully legally compliant and seeks to create positive policy developments in the interest of the entire space.
According to Mike Lempres, who is Coinbase’s Chief Legal and Risk Officer:
“The Blockchain Association is an effort to get the preeminent companies in the space together so [policymakers] know they’re hearing from companies that welcome regulation when it’s appropriate. We’re not companies looking to game the system, but trying to develop a legal and regulatory system that’ll stand the test of time.”
Clearly, the lobbying group is looking long-term so that the space can carve a necessary niche in the fintech markets. Since the currency regulatory environment is still confusing at best, there is much work to be done. The group’s emergence shows that the industry is arguably maturing and trying to reduce risks within the space, which would make it overall more palatable for legislators.
This comes at a time when just in July, Coinbase announced its intentions to create its own political action committee (PAC) for U.S. elections. With the push towards making constructive ballot initiatives on behalf of crypto, we will likely see more and more involvement from crypto-related groups into politics and legislative concerns more generally. Such a push is needed due to the current political climate which has has yet to adopt the necessary openness to allow blockchain technology to really grow in its potential for mass adoption.