Crypto firm Circle

Crypto firm Circle gets EU approval to issue stablecoins

  • Circle has been granted a France e-money license, making it compliant with stablecoin provisions under EU crypto laws.

  • Circle has become the first global stablecoin issuer to achieve MiCA compliance, or Markets in Crypto-Assets.

  • Last year, the EU passed MiCA, the world’s first comprehensive law governing crypto companies.

Circle said Monday that it has been registered as an electronic money institution, or EMI, in France, which grants the firm a crucial license to issue stablecoins in accordance with EU regulations.

In a statement, Circle, which is best known for its USD Coin stablecoin, said it has received an e-money license from the French banking industry regulator, the Autorité de Controle Prudentiel et de Resolution, or ACPR.

It marks Circle’s first compliance with the EU’s landmark market-in-cryptoassets regulation, or MiCA, as a stablecoin issuer.

The approval means that both Circle’s USDC and EURC, tokens will be able to be issued in the EU in compliance with MiCA’s stablecoin regulations. In addition, Circle is opening up its Circle Mint in France, which allows businesses to mint and redeem Circle stablecoins.

“Since our founding, Circle has sought to build durable, compliant, and well-regulated infrastructure for stablecoins,”
Circle Co-founder and CEO Jeremy Allaire

Typically, stablecoins are pegged to traditional assets, such as government-issued currencies. The main reason investors hold them is to avoid the volatility that is associated with other cryptocurrencies, such as bitcoin.

Additionally, they enable users to trade cryptocurrencies quickly, avoiding having to rely on fiat currencies stored in banks.

“Our adherence to MiCA, which represents one of the most comprehensive crypto regulatory regimes in the world, is a huge milestone in bringing digital currency into mainstream scale and acceptance,”
Circle Co-founder and CEO Jeremy Allaire

Regulations for stablecoins are introduced by the EU

A comprehensive law that governs cryptocurrency companies’ operations was passed by EU regulators last year. According to the law, companies must establish investor protections and keep their platforms safe from manipulation.

May 2023 marked the official entry into force of MiCA.

The provisions governing stablecoins, however, were only approved last week. Some stablecoins, particularly those denominated in the United States, were restricted from trading due to these stringent measures.

A company must stop issuing non-euro stablecoins if it crosses the threshold of 1 million transactions per day or a value over 200 million euros (US$215.2 million) per day, according to Article 23 of MiCA.

As a France-registered EMI, Circle is able to offer its services – including minting and redeeming USDC via Circle Mint – to customers not only in France, but across Europe.

In other words, crypto businesses can offer their services in one EU country and then export them to other countries within the bloc, as MiCA explains.

Under MiCA, the remaining obligations for crypto asset service providers will become effective on December 30, 2024. The deadline for cryptocurrency companies to become fully compliant with MiCA is July 2026.

According to CoinGecko data, USDC is now the world’s second-largest stablecoin, launched by Circle and Coinbase in September 2018. According to CoinGecko, it is second only to Tether’s USDT, which has $112.7 billion in circulation.

Disclaimer: This news article aims to provide accurate, timely information. However, readers are advised to verify facts independently and consult with a professional before making any decisions based on this content.






Image Credits: Shutterstock, Pix, Finbold, Getty Images

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Written By:
Penny Sommerfeld