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  • Writer's pictureT Skevington and M Bacina

BIS seeks submissions on prudential regulatory treatment of crypto-assets

Updated: May 2

The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision has published a discussion paper seeking views on the prudential regulatory treatment of crypto-assets, including:

  1. the features and risk characteristics of crypto-assets that should inform the design of a prudential treatment for banks' crypto-asset exposures;

  2. general principles and considerations to guide the design of a prudential treatment of banks' exposures to crypto-assets, including an illustrative example of potential capital and liquidity requirements for exposures to high-risk crypto-assets.

Chapter 4 of the discussion paper sets out 15 questions the Committee is seeking specific feedback on, including:

  • Q1 - What features of crypto-assets should be considered in the context of developing any potential prudential regulatory definition? Please describe the features and their relevance for the prudential treatment of crypto-assets

  • Q3 - What benefits do crypto-assets provide for the banking system, and the provision of financial services more generally?

  • Q11 - What are your views on the disclosure requirements related to banks’ crypto-assets? Should additional information related to banks’ crypto-asset exposures be disclosed?

The discussion paper provides that:

The responses to this paper will inform the Committee’s development of a prudential treatment for crypto-assets at large, including for crypto-assets that are issued by regulated financial institutions, or that make use of stabilisation tools. The Committee is continuing to assess the appropriate prudential treatment for such types of crypto-assets, and will consult on any specific measures.


Should the Committee decide to specify a prudential treatment of crypto-assets, it will issue a consultation paper detailing its proposals and seek further input from stakeholders. Any specified treatment would constitute a minimum standard for internationally-active banks. Jurisdictions would be free to apply additional and/or more conservative measures if warranted. As such, jurisdictions that currently prohibit their banks from having any exposures to crypto-assets would be deemed compliant with any potential global prudential standard.

While the Committee is encouraging submissions primarily from academics, banks, central banks, finance ministries, market participants, payment system operators and providers, supervisory authorities and technology companies, submissions from any interested party are encouraged.

Submissions and feedback can be submitted here by 13 March 2020. Submissions should be specifically marked as confidential to prevent the submission being published on the BIS website.


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