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Mardo Soo, Founder, and Lena Elvbakken, Co-founder, of a cryptocurrency consulting firm, are portrayed in a professional office setting. They are engaged in a discussion over a laptop, focused on cryptocurrency consulting topics.

Cryptocurrency Regulations Around the World 2024

In the UAE, cryptocurrency businesses need a VARA license; in Estonia, they require licensing from the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU); and in Lithuania, compliance with the Financial Crime Investigation Service (FCIS) is mandatory.

Global Cryptocurrency Rules: From Local Laws to International Norms

This landscape is shaped by diverse local laws, reflecting each country's stance towards digital currencies, from stringent regulations in some regions to more lenient approaches in others. Simultaneously, there's a growing trend towards establishing international norms and cooperative frameworks to address the borderless nature of cryptocurrencies. The section explores how these global rules are influenced by economic, technological, and political factors, highlighting the need for a harmonized approach to foster innovation while ensuring security and compliance in the digital asset space.

Regulation on Cryptocurrency: A Comprehensive Overview

Illustration of the Lithuania flag alongside a symbol of a crypto license in Lithuania, in

In Lithuania, adherence to cryptocurrency rules is stringently monitored by the Financial Crime Investigation Service (FCIS), which issues two pivotal licenses: the Cryptocurrency Exchange License and the Crypto Wallet and Custodian Services License. These licenses encompass various operations like exchange services, OTC trading, IEOs, utility token transactions, and NFT minting. Additionally, they authorize crypto-to-fiat exchanges, euro transactions, futures, shorts, staking, and the creation of branded debit cards, all under the umbrella of Lithuanian regulatory guidelines.

Illustration of the Estonian flag alongside a symbol of a crypto license in Estonia, indic

In Estonia, the enforcement of cryptocurrency laws is rigorously handled by the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), a key agency responsible for the prevention of money laundering and terrorist financing. The FIU grants a comprehensive license known as the Virtual Currency Service Provider License. This license covers several critical areas: virtual wallet services, enabling both hot and cold wallet solutions; exchanging virtual currency for fiat, and vice versa; and facilitating crypto-to-crypto transactions. Estonia is a preferred location for crypto businesses, notably ranking first in the 2020 tax competitiveness index, largely due to its 0% corporate tax policy. 

Illustration of the Dubai flag alongside a symbol of a crypto license in Dubai, indicating

In Dubai, under the oversight of the Virtual Asset Regulatory Authority (VARA), cryptocurrency laws are rigorously enforced, governing the issuance of Virtual Asset Service Provider (VASP) licenses. These laws encompass a range of services including crypto exchanges, custody, broker-dealer operations, and lending and borrowing services. Dubai's commitment to a crypto-friendly environment is further highlighted by its policies of 0% tax on dividends and employment, positioning it as a desirable location for crypto enterprises under VARA's stringent regulatory framework.

Illustration of the Hong Kong flag alongside a symbol of a crypto license in Hong Kong, in

In Hong Kong, the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) plays a pivotal role in regulating cryptocurrency exchanges following the introduction of the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorist Financing (Amendment) Act 2022. This act, effective from April 1, 2023, mandates virtual asset service providers (VASPs) to obtain a license from the SFC for legal operation. Without this license, businesses are prohibited from running or claiming to run a virtual asset services business, conducting regulated activities, or promoting such services to the public.

Illustration of the Canada flag alongside a symbol of a crypto license in Canada, indicati

In Canada, under cryptocurrency rules, businesses engaged in crypto exchange are classified as Money Services Businesses (MSB) and must comply with regulations set by the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (FINTRAC). This includes adhering to anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing protocols, maintaining detailed financial records, and conducting risk assessments. Foreign entities serving Canadian clients fall under the Foreign Money Services Business (FMSB) category and are subject to similar regulatory standards.

Illustration of the United Kingdom flag alongside a symbol of a crypto license in United K

In the UK, the regulation on cryptocurrency is favorable for businesses despite the lack of a formal crypto license. The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) offers guidance through its Innovation Hub, with a voluntary registration process. The UK Cryptoasset Taskforce classifies cryptocurrencies into categories like exchange, security, and utility tokens, plus e-money tokens as per FCA’s 2019 Policy Statement. Although no specific crypto license is required, the UK's regulatory environment is supportive and attractive for crypto businesses seeking clarity and compliance with emerging regulations.

Illustration of the Switzerland flag alongside a symbol of a crypto license in Switzerland

In Switzerland, the regulatory framework for cryptocurrency businesses is robust, requiring a Swiss crypto license and oversight by bodies like FINMA. Cryptocurrencies are recognized as taxable assets by the Swiss Federal Tax Administration. Supporting blockchain innovation, Switzerland hosts initiatives like the Crypto Valley Association and the Blockchain Taskforce. Licenses available include Banking Licenses for traditional and crypto banking, Fintech Licenses for managing public crypto deposits, Investment Fund Licenses for asset management, Securities Dealer Licenses for trading in blockchain instruments, Payment System Licenses for operating blockchain payment systems, and DLT Trading Platform Licenses for DLT-based platforms.

Illustration of the Singapore flag alongside a symbol of a crypto license in Singapore, in

Singapore, known for its advanced market economy, stands out in Southeast Asia for its robust approach to regulating the cryptocurrency sector. This is led by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), which has established clear guidelines and licensing requirements for cryptocurrency exchanges. With the Payment Service Act 2019, businesses dealing in crypto exchanges must obtain a license, either as a Small or Major Payment Institution. This regulation underscores Singapore's commitment to a secure, regulated crypto environment, balancing innovation with consumer protection and compliance, thus cementing its position as a key hub for crypto-related ventures.

Illustration of the Malta flag alongside a symbol of a crypto license in Malta, indicating

Malta's regulation on cryptocurrency framework is established in July 2018, positions it as a leading Fintech and "Blockchain Island". The framework regulates Crypto Exchanges and ICOs, attracting major crypto players. The Malta crypto exchange license, founded on principles of consumer protection, market integrity, and financial stability, is governed by the Virtual Financial Assets Act (VFAA) and overseen by the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA). This balanced approach makes Malta a desirable hub for regulated crypto activities.

Illustration of the El Salvador flag alongside a symbol of a crypto license in El Salvador

The National Commission of Digital Assets, the governmental body in El Salvador, is responsible for issuing cryptocurrency licenses. Holders of these licenses benefit from various tax exemptions, including on capital gains and income from digital assets. Additionally, El Salvador accepts cryptocurrency for the payment of government taxes and fees. The process to obtain a license from the National Commission of Digital Assets is streamlined, mirroring the government's encouragement of cryptocurrency investment and regulation. In June 2021, El Salvador emerged as a global pioneer by making Bitcoin legal tender, actively promoting the cryptocurrency sector.

Illustration of the Poland flag alongside a symbol of a crypto license in Poland, indicati

Under Poland's cryptocurrency laws, the National Bank and KNF Financial Supervision Authority is responsible for issuing cryptocurrency licenses. The government is considering taxing digital assets, supported by Poland’s role in the European Blockchain Partnership and international tax agreements. Virtual Asset Service Providers (VASPs) must register as limited liability companies, complying with a PLN 5000 capital requirement and AML guidelines, to conduct fiat-to-crypto exchanges and provide custody services.

Illustration of the Cyprus flag alongside a symbol of a crypto license in Cyprus, indicati

In Cyprus, companies operating in the cryptocurrency sector must obtain a license from CySEC, adhering to the country's regulation on cryptocurrency. The process, while intricate, provides substantial benefits to licensed entities. Cyprus is known for its clear and transparent regulatory environment, specifically designed for crypto companies, with guidelines set by CySEC. The authority has considerable experience in regulating blockchain businesses. Additionally, Cyprus offers notable advantages such as banking solutions for licensed crypto firms and a favorable tax regime, making it a highly desirable location for businesses in the crypto and blockchain sectors.


Top Locations for Cryptocurrency Companies: Estonia, Lithuania, and Dubai

20 000€
20 000€
25 000€
License Type & Government fee
1. 9,700€ - Advisory Services & VA Transfer and Settlement Services
1. Cryptocurrency exchange license 2. Crypto wallet and custodian services license
1. Cryptocurrency exchange license 2. Crypto wallet and custodian services license
2. 24,250€ - Broker-Dealer, Custody, Exchange, Lending and Borrowing & VA Management and Investment Services
No additional fee
10 000€
May be required by VARA
Not required
Monthly and yearly are needed
Can be virtual
AML (Anti-Money Laundry Officer)
Can be any nationality
Local needed
Local needed
AML monthly salary
Starting from 1200€
Starting from 2000€
Local director
Can be any nationality
Can be any nationality
Can be of any nationality, but have to live in Estonia
Share capital terms
25% now, 75% within a year.
Required share capital
24,250€ (Advisory Services) - 194,000€ (Exchange Services)
125 000€
100 000€ - Crypto wallet and custodian services license. 250000€ - Cryptocurrency exchange license

Client Portfolio

Advisory Portfolio

Advantages of Choosing Consulting24 for Your Cryptocurrency Consulting Needs

Consulting24: Pioneers in Cryptocurrency Regulation with Over 500 Successful Crypto License Acquisitions.


Consulting24 Strongest in Estonia Award 2023. Representing top cryptocurrency regulation experts
Consulting24 Strongest in Estonia Award 2020. Representing top cryptocurrency regulation experts

Consulting24 Cryptocurrency Advisors

Consulting24 CEO, Mardo Soo, leading our team to success in the field of cryptocurrency regulation.

Mardo Soo - CEO

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Mardo, leading the helm at Consulting24, embodies the quintessential spirit of a crypto consulting maestro. His role transcends beyond simply acquiring clients; he prioritizes nurturing enduring business alliances. His proficiency in simplifying intricate issues is evident in the convoluted world of cryptocurrency, a testament to his exceptional leadership prowess.

Lena Elvbakken - Founder

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As a co-founder of Consulting24, Lena has made a unique mark in the field of cryptocurrency regulation consultancy. Guiding innovators with proficiency and elegance, she navigates them through the complexities of setting up exchanges and token launches in crypto-friendly regions like Estonia, Lithuania, and Dubai. Her invaluable input in unraveling the intricacies of setting up a cryptocurrency exchange amplifies Consulting24's crucial role in the worldwide growth of cryptocurrency.

Consulting24 founder, Lena Elvbakken, leading our team to success in the field of cryptocurrency regulation.
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