Joe Biden signed his 82nd executive orders since January 2021 when he was sworn in as president. This is a rare opportunity for the U.S. to address a regulatory framework regarding digital assets.
The White House announced Wednesday that President Biden’s executive orders required government agencies to investigate the possibility of the rollout of a digital currency by the United States central bank. It also required them to coordinate and consolidate policies on a national crypto framework. Many media outlets reported that the U.S. president originally planned to sign the executive orders in February. However, this was postponed due to Russia’s military actions against Ukraine.
Many industry leaders saw the executive order as a regulatory opportunity. Biden had never spoken about blockchain and crypto directly during his presidency. According to reports, the U.S. president may have waited longer because of the possibility that Russia could use digital currency to circumvent U.S. sanctions. Three times in the executive order, it mentioned the dangers of circumventing sanctions. This sentiment was echoed by National Economic Council director Brian Deese as well as National Security advisor Jake Sullivan.
“The E.O. outlines the approach. The E.O. will strengthen the U.S.’s leadership in the global finance system and protect the effectiveness of crucial national security tools such as sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering frameworks.
President Biden signed the infrastructure bill into law on November 20, 2021
The executive order was quickly reacted to by regulators and lawmakers. Janet Yellen, Treasury Secretary, may have released her statement prematurely on the subject. She stated that the executive order could bring “substantial benefits for the nation and consumers” by supporting innovation and addressing industry risks. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, who has frequently linked cryptocurrencies to illicit acts, stated that Biden was right to highlight crypto’s risks and that the U.S. government should have “strong rules before they’re too late.”
“While I support the President’s efforts to fight money laundering and protect America’s national security,” Cynthia Lummis of Wyoming, a Bitcoin (BTC HODLer), said that his executive order overlooks the fact the overwhelming majority digital asset users are law-abiding, and trying to improve our financial system. “We need sensible rules around stablecoins. Although I am not convinced about the necessity of a central bank digital cryptocurrency, I will continue to closely follow the Federal Reserve in this area.”
Related: Crypto could be able to bypass President Biden’s ‘devastating’ sanctions on Russian elites and banks: Report
The Crypto Council for Innovation is a group of major crypto exchanges, including Coinbase and Gemini. It was formed in April 2021 and describes the executive order as having an “holistic, informed” approach to cryptocurrency. It was also stated that it would lead to greater regulatory clarity, financial innovation and inclusion.
The CCI stated that they look forward to working with policymakers and regulators in the coming months in order to create smart policies to bolster America’s position in crypto innovation. Collaboration is essential.”
President Biden signed the EO to recognize the immense potential of crypto. It is a reflection of the American people’s importance to crypto. We support the President’s efforts to promote responsible financial innovation as well as a fair and inclusive economy. Below is the full statement. pic.twitter.com/GUINxBeBQG
— March 9, 2022, Crypto Council for Innovation (@crypto_council).
Jeremy Allaire, cofounder and CEO of crypto payment firm Circle, also added:
“This E.O. is a great opportunity for crypto community members to engage with policy makers on important issues. “should be seen as the best opportunity to interact with policymakers on the most important issues. This is a national conversation in the U.S., and policymakers have their doors wide open.