The Crypto Council for Innovation has expressed hope that the United States can develop laws to treat the cryptocurrency industry fairly. However, an advisor to the council, Sean Lee, has warned that achieving fair treatment will require “a lot of work.” Speaking at the World of Web3 (WOW) Summit in Hong Kong, Lee stated that the financial reform undertaken following the 2008 economic crash could be applied to the cryptocurrency industry. He added that while implementing such reform usually required a crisis, many crypto industry workers feel that such a crisis is already in progress.
Lee’s comments came against the backdrop of a crackdown by US financial regulators on cryptocurrency, termed a “war on crypto” by some industry observers. The FTX meltdown of November 2020 has furnished those regulators and anti-crypto lawmakers with the ammunition to take harsh actions against the fledgling industry. Despite this, Lee noted that FTX was not representative of cryptocurrency, but was simply a centralised trading venue.
Lee also highlighted the lack of education around cryptocurrency, and the work that needs to be done to help politicians understand its nuances. The Crypto Council for Innovation is seeking dialogue with such politicians in order to encourage them to craft “more progressive” policies towards cryptocurrency. Sheila Warren, the council’s CEO, has made similar calls for greater regulation of the industry, in light of a recent lawsuit filed by the CFTC against Binance. She stressed that the lawsuit could hopefully put an end to regulators exploiting a lack of regulatory clarity.
Warren has also welcomed the CFTC’s categorisation of particular cryptos as commodities, and called the move “a powerful shot across the bow of the SEC.” However, the ongoing “Wild West” of the cryptomarkets, in the words of SEC Chair Gary Gensler, is likely to ensure that US cryptocurrency regulation remains high on the political agenda. It therefore remains unclear what form fair cryptocurrency regulation in the United States will ultimately take.