Spain’s crypto landscape grows as 30 new operators gain approval
In 2023, Spain’s Central Bank reported a 50 percent growth in the number of licensed cryptocurrency-related companies in the country. According to data from the bank and Criptonoticias, approximately 30 new firms have recently obtained operating permits, bringing the total number of Bank of Spain-approved crypto operators to 85.
Among the approved entities are prominent exchanges like BitPanda, Crypto.com, and the Spanish branches of Binance. The list also includes smaller domestic web3 companies and cryptocurrency custodians, including Prosegur, a security provider listed on the Madrid Stock Exchange that has ventured into the cryptocurrency custody sector.
🇪🇸 Spain Moves to Adopt MiCA Six Months Before Deadline, Cites Investor Protection: Here’s More
— Cryptonews.com (@cryptonews) October 31, 2023
The majority of the approved corporations are headquartered in major Spanish cities like Madrid and Barcelona, though there are also a few in smaller cities. Beyond Spain, companies from other European countries — the Netherlands, Malta, Italy, Austria, Estonia, Lithuania, Finland, Cyprus, Hungary, Luxembourg, the United Kingdom and Germany — are also listed.
Spain’s crypto regulations
Operating a cryptocurrency firm in Spain has become more intricate due to regulatory requirements. Since October 2021, all companies offering crypto-related services have been mandated to seek licenses from the Bank of Spain, involving a thorough electronic documentation submission. The introduction of EU markets in crypto-assets regulation (MiCA) has further added complexity to the registration process.
The Spanish government plans to accelerate the adoption of the European regulation on the MiCA by six months. This pioneering regulation, slated for implementation in Spain by December 2025, aims to establish a robust regulatory and supervisory framework. The goal is to provide legal certainty and safeguard investors in cryptoasset services.
Despite the regulatory challenges, there is a noticeable surge in the adoption of digital currencies in Spain. The country has implemented regulations to combat money laundering and terrorist financing through cryptocurrencies and adhere to essential Financial Action Task Force (FATF) requirements like the Travel Rule. In addition to the growing number of licensed corporations, Spain has witnessed increased crypto-powered commerce and real estate transactions.
While facing increased regulatory complexity, Spain continues to lead in cryptocurrency adoption, implementing measures to prevent illicit activities. The country has also seen a surge in real estate transactions using digital currencies, positioning itself as a key player in the global digital economy.
Angel Marinov is the Managing Editor at Coinlabz. With extensive knowledge of crypto payments and blockchain use cases, Angel is a trusted source of accurate and timely information