Australia’s Senate Committee on Economics Legislation has issued its feedback on Senator Andrew Bragg’s cryptocurrency bill. The committee, in its report on September 4th, discussed the “Digital Assets (Market Regulation) Bill 2023” and suggested several amendments to the proposed legislation.
Among the key recommendations, the Senate indicated its intention to pass the bill with minor adjustments, including the removal of nonfungible tokens (NFTs) from the definition of regulated digital assets. Additionally, lawmakers proposed excluding specific asset-based tokens, such as the Gold and Silver Standard and the BetaCarbon Token, from the definition of stablecoins. They also suggested extending the transition period from three to nine months.
The report called for the Board of Taxation to conduct a review of the tax treatment of digital assets and transactions in Australia, aiming to introduce legislation in early 2024. Furthermore, the government was urged to fully implement the recommendations of the Council of Financial Regulators to address the issue of debanking in Australia, as it was recognized that banks reducing services to cryptocurrency firms could have adverse consequences, potentially pushing the industry underground.
The document highlighted concerns about the impact of the government’s approach to digital asset regulation on Australian consumers and investment. The Senate viewed Senator Bragg’s bill as a significant step toward establishing a comprehensive digital asset regulatory framework, contrasting it with the previous government’s crypto agenda, which they asserted had been abandoned to the detriment of Australians.
In March, Senator Bragg introduced the “Digital Assets (Market Regulation) Bill 2023” to safeguard consumers and promote investor interests. The draft bill outlined regulatory recommendations related to stablecoins, exchange licensing, and custody requirements.
Notably, the Senate Committee’s report was delayed beyond its original anticipated release date. Initially scheduled for August 2nd, the reporting date was extended to August 16th, then to August 25th, before being finalized on September 4th.