According to the British politician who served as Chancellor of the Exchequer from 2016 to 2019 – Philip Hammond – digital assets could ease the post-Brexit financial disruption, which the UK is passing through. If London does not take the cryptocurrency industry seriously, it risks being surpassed by its European competitors, he added.
‘We Need to Move Quickly And Effectively’
In a recent interview with City A.M., the former member of the Conservative Party – Philip Hammond – opined that the UK should move its focus from Brexit to digital currencies. By doing so, the kingdom could secure its financial status since bitcoin, and the altcoins will become more and more employed on a macroeconomic level:
“I personally think the momentum is now unstoppable. We need to move quickly and effectively to secure London’s position.”
Hammond warned that ignoring the asset class is not wise as many European nations have begun embracing them. He added that some of those competitors view cryptocurrencies as an opportunity to overtake the UK as a world financial services hub:
“If we don’t watch carefully we will find some surprising people are ahead of us.”
Speaking of “surprising” countries with a friendly stance on the cryptocurrency industry, the small British Overseas Territory of Gibraltar is worth mentioning.
It has a comprehensive regulatory framework, which has attracted many companies operating in the field. One of the examples is the Chinese crypto giant – Huobi – which recently showed intentions to move its spot-trading operations to Gibraltar.
As for the regulation topic, Hammond regretted that the UK authorities neglected the cryptocurrency sector. He predicted that blockchain technology – the backbone of digital assets – would underpin a future trading system. As such, British watchdogs should take the matter more seriously:
“Regulators have been heavily distracted. We need to move pretty quickly to show that this technology is recognized and accepted by legislators and regulators in the UK.”
Bank of England Is Not a Crypto Fan
The United Kingdom does not seem to provide the friendliest environment for cryptocurrencies since the nation’s central bank – the Bank of England – is a huge critic.
In May this year, Andrew Bailey – the institution’s Governor – argued that bitcoin and the other digital currencies ”have no intrinsic value,” and individuals who invest in them should be extra cautious.
Earlier this month, Jon Cunliffe – Deputy Governor at the Bank of England – reiterated the negative stance saying that the volatility of the market could start to spill over into traditional financial markets.