Over the last year, Estonia has issued more than 900 licenses to cryptocurrency firms embracing this rising industry.
Estonia is one of the first European Union authorities to legalize all crypto related activities. Estonia has two types of licenses it’s given out. One has to do with managing exchanges of digital assets while the other has to do with the provision of services for wallets, and the best part is that it takes just two weeks to get approved.
Over 500 digital asset companies have been awarded the first license while about 400 crypto wallet providers firms have obtained the second license.
According to a publication by a member of Njord law firm, Nikolay Demchuk, the process of acquiring a license is a hassle-free one.
Once an applicant applies for the license, the EFIU (Estonian Financial Intelligence Unit), the department responsible for giving out the licenses, has about 30 days to go over each application. However, most times, licenses get approved in a week or two. On the contrary, the EFIU can withdraw an applicant’s license if the establishment has not begun operations within 6 months of acquiring the license.
Based on Demchuk’s report, companies with the intention of acquiring a license are required to meet a different set of KYC (Know your customer) rules and regulations against money laundering. All cryptocurrency entities that carry out their registration in Estonia will be operating legally in the European Union (EU).
Meanwhile, irrespective of the fact that the government have played their role well and made sure that there are no stumbling blocks, the new firms are complaining that the local banks are refusing to offer their services to clients affiliated to cryptocurrency. In the same light, Demchuk said that “Opening a bank account is the biggest problem facing crypto companies. Estonian banks are not yet ready to serve clients operating with cryptocurrency.”