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3 Members of Euro Parliament Call for Stricter Bitcoin Controls, Prohibit …

Three France-based members of the European Parliament have tabled a motion for a resolution calling “stricter controls over all virtual currency” such as Bitcoin. The trio have even asked to “prohibit” virtual currency exchanges transactions altogether which, in essence, is asking for a ban of all such transactions.

Three members of European Parliament, all French nationals, have tabled a motion for a resolution on “controlling virtual currencies such as the ‘bitcoin’”. The motion was tabled on November 25th, 2015.

The members cite Rule 133 of the European Parliament’s Rules of Procedure wherein a motion of 200 words or under can be tabled by any member of the Parliament for “a resolution on a matter falling within the spheres of activity of the European Union.”

The three members of Parliament are:

  • Sophie Montel, a member at the Committee on Budgets and elsewhere.
  • Florian Philippot, a member of two committees, namely the Internal Market and Consumer Protection Constitutional Affairs.
  • Dominique Bilde, a member on the Committee on Culture and Education and Education and elsewhere.

The Motion

The tabled motion is as follows:

The European Parliament,

–             having regard to Rule 133 of its Rules of Procedure,

A.               whereas the Court of Justice of the European Union stated in its judgment of 22 October 2015 that transactions involving the exchange of the virtual currency ‘bitcoin’ for traditional currencies should be exempted from VAT on the ground that the ‘bitcoin’ is neither a security confering a property right nor a security of a comparable nature;

B.               whereas there is a high level of risk in the bitcoin system (mainly related to the anonymity involved) on account of the irreversibility of transactions, whereas it favours the first purchasers unduly (thereby creating gross inequalities) and it has certain similarities with a Ponzi scheme; whereas some countries, such as Russia, have decided to make some transactions involving virtual currencies a criminal offence, owing to the high risk of their being used for illegal purposes;

C.                whereas some countries, such as Russia, have decided to make some transactions involving virtual currencies a criminal offence, owing to the high risk of their being used for illegal purposes;

  1.  Calls on the Commission to allow Member States to exercise stricter controls over all virtual currency exchange transactions and even to prohibit them;
  2. Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Commission, the Council and the Member States.

With A, the members refer the European Court of Justice’s recent ruling that the exchange of bitcoin and other virtual currencies for traditional fiat currencies should be exempt from VAT. In B, the members refer to the bitcoin system as a Ponzi scheme, a tag that has followed cryptocurrencies occasionally in the past.

Also read: Financial Times Writer Calls Bitcoin A “Pyramid Scheme”

The members also point to a proposal by the Russian Ministry of Finance to impose a 4-year prison sentence for Bitcoin users in the country. 

As the numbered requests show, the members call for the Commission to grant Member States the authority to exercise stricter controls on Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies and even called for the  prohibition of all virtual currency – fiat currency exchange transactions outright.

Rule 133 states that the authors will be notified of the decisions taken by the Committee and the Conference of Presidents in response to the tablet motion. The motion was originally tabled on November 25, 2015 and was updated yesterday, December 21 2015.

Credit to Reddit user skapaneas for the find.

Image from Shutterstock.

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