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More than 100 firms applied for registration after the FCA launched an interim program in December 2020, having become the country's anti-money laundering director and anti-terrorist finance manager earlier this year. Some 60 others have been denied permanent registration or have had their applications withdrawn.

The view of the remaining 13 companies in the Temporary Registration Regime (TRR) was confused on Wednesday, when the FCA said it extended the March 31 deadline for "a small number of firms where it is absolutely necessary to proceed with temporary registration." how long.

Among those waiting for the outcome are Copper, an institutional crypto service provider, Revolut, a $ 33 billion fintech company offering cryptocurrency purchases, and a crypto exchange and digital wallet provider,, reported to be worth $ 14 billion.

Some in the industry say the FCA was taking a risk-free approach unnecessarily in the accreditation process.

"It is a withdrawal of registration on the basis of trivial matters," the CEO of one company who said he withdrew his application told CoinDesk who requested anonymity to avoid offending the FCA. "They want very little scratch and use that to make the whole process legal."

The criticism is similar to that of CEO Peter Smith who joined the FCA in an interview he had with a U.K. newspaper. The Telegraph in February. Smith said the director was "not committed enough to promote innovation and collaborate with the industry." The UK is "lagging behind" as a result, he said. last May received an estimated $ 5.2 billion following a $ 300 million sponsorship cycle.

Localized firms have the option of moving their operations elsewhere to continue doing business. Earlier this week, crypto payment provider Wirex revealed that it had withdrawn its request and plans to help U.K. customers. through his licensed subsidiary in Croatia.

"They have been abused, I think, unless they can integrate a new business into an unregulated area, they can," the CEO is one of the companies preparing to use the overseas facility, which also requested anonymity. "I know that some of these companies have been in the process of IPO prep or critical funding negotiations and those negotiations are collapsing because of the FCA's approach here, which is not democratic and very focused."

There are other options: legal action, course taken by Gidiplus, a bitcoin ATM operator who went to court to try to reverse the FCA's refusal of its application. The case was dismissed and the judge ruled that "there is no evidence that Gidiplus will do his job in a consistent manner."

The legal route will likely eliminate any prospect of a future meeting if the FCA or Treasury changes its position. Anyone taking this course will probably need deep pockets.

The FCA, which also takes control of crypto ads, said it was working to meet its legal obligations.

"We are continuing our work to register crypto firms to ensure that they are not a money laundering system and have recently launched a consultation on how crypto is marketed to consumers," the regulator said. "We will continue to work with HM Treasury, which has set the standard for crypto regulation in the U.K."

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