As the trading industry in Cyprus continues to grow, not only in size but in complexity, the role of the country’s local regulator – the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC) has gotten more complicated.
This Tuesday at the iFX Expo in Cyprus the Chairwoman of the regulator Demetra Kalogerou stated that the Cypriot watchdog is up to the task and it plans to triple its personnel in two years-time in order to be able to effectively regulate and monitor the market.
When asked whether CySEC has enough personnel at present to effectively monitor the market, Kalogerou responded by saying, “We never have enough personnel.” She then went on to explain that this is one of the regulator’s main priorities.
“I think I got out the right message to the government that we need support, we need to have expertise, because as I said before, a lot of regulations are still coming, and existing ones are so complex that we need enough personnel, we need expertise, to monitor the market. But I am confident that they will support me.”
Kalogerou also highlighted that even when the country was going through its economic crisis in 2013, the regulator still put market surveillance at its forefront and doubled its teams during this time.
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As of April 2019, there are 676 regulated entities in Cyprus. This was a 173.7 percent increase from 2011 when there were only 247 regulated entities in Cyprus. At present, trading venues only contribute a small amount to the total regulated entities, with one-third of regulated entities being investment firms.
Left unchecked, crypto could jeopardize the integrity of the trading industry
During her speech at the iFX Expo, the first and largest financial business to business expo in the world, in Cyprus, Kalogerou also spoke about technology, as well as blockchain and cryptocurrency.
Specifically, the chairwoman spoke about the importance of regulating and monitoring the crypto space, because if left unchecked, it could jeopardize the financial market.
To do this, the regulator has advised that the EU 5th directive should bring crypto activities into the scope. “AML provisions must apply to crypto assets,” the CySEC Chairwoman said.
“On the one hand, we recognize the value of new technology based on crypto assets, including say, the long-term applicability of blockchain to modern day trade. On the other hand, we see proven AML and FTC risks on crypto assets themselves which jeopardizes not only investor protection but the integrity and the legitimacy of the market and the infrastructure which underpins it.”