Crypto industry jumps into lobbying in response to FinCEN

The crypto lobby is growing as more firms join the effort to fight rules that attack financial privacy. 

 The Blockchain Association today announced the addition of five new members, with membership now totaling 30 firms. The new members are Uniswap, Blockfi, Fireblocks, CMT Digital and Blockchain Capital. 

In its tweet announcing the news, the Blockchain Association attributed the rise in membership to its work in presenting an industry response to rules from the Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, or FinCEN, at the tail end of the Trump administration. The association wrote, “Battling back the FinCEN process was an important step, demonstrating what is possible when we speak with one voice.” 

FinCEN’s proposal involved extending $10,000 thresholds on reporting all crypto transactions and $3,000 limits on transactions with self-hosted wallets that lack identifying features. The rules, derived from the Bank Secrecy Act, would be a major interference in peer-to-peer transactions. They are, as of this week, in motion again. 

The Blockchain Association, as a trade association, unites members of a single industry under a shared umbrella and lobbies Congress on behalf of mutual interests. Many firms in crypto operate their own in-house lobbying operations or individual contracts with established firms.

Other members of the crypto industry lobby have benefitted from the attention that FinCEN has drawn to policymaking. Non-profit Coin Center recently saw a $1 million donation from Grayscale. A Coin Center representative commented on their coming priorities: “Most of our work in 2021 will likely be continuing to hold to the line for financial privacy and hopefully advancing some more sensible tax policy.”

Coin Center and the Blockchain Association were, indeed, highly visible allies in the fight against FinCEN’s proposal. 

The Blockchain Association had not responded to Cointelegraph’s request for comment as of press time. 

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