Estonia Advances Cryptocurrency Regulation Bill Amidst Growing Industry Concerns

March 23, 2024 | by


Estonia’s cryptocurrency landscape is set to undergo a significant transformation as the government advances a bill to regulate cryptocurrency service providers amidst growing industry concerns. The proposed legislation, if enacted into law, would bring these providers under the supervision of the Financial Supervision Authority (FSA), aiming to enhance regulatory oversight and accountability. Notably, the bill also introduces higher penalties for Anti-Money Laundering (AML) violations, reflecting Estonia’s commitment to combatting financial crimes and aligning with European Union regulations. As Estonia progresses towards comprehensive regulation, stakeholders eagerly anticipate the outcome of the forthcoming parliamentary vote, which will determine the future of the country’s cryptocurrency ecosystem.

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Supervision by the Financial Supervision Authority (FSA)

Under the proposed legislation, cryptocurrency service providers would fall under the supervision of the Financial Supervision Authority (FSA), a move designed to bolster regulatory oversight and enhance accountability within the industry. Currently, these providers operate under the purview of the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) and must adhere to Anti-Money Laundering (AML) regulations.

If the bill receives parliamentary approval and is enacted into law, the FSA will commence issuing licenses to cryptocurrency service providers starting in 2025. Existing FIU license holders will face a transition period, being required to apply for FSA licensing by the end of that year. Estonian Finance Minister Mart Võrklaev expressed confidence in the licensing process, emphasizing that serious service providers can obtain the requisite licenses from the Financial Supervisory Authority.

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Heightened penalties for AML violations

One notable aspect of the proposed legislation is the introduction of substantially increased fines for Anti-Money Laundering (AML) violations. While the current national law allows fines of up to 40,000 euros ($43,450), the new bill could see penalties soar to as high as 5 million euros ($5.2 million). This significant escalation underscores Estonia’s commitment to combating financial crimes and ensuring strict adherence to cryptocurrency regulations.

The bill aims to align Estonia with the European Union’s Markets in Crypto-Assets (MiCA) regulations, a move that seeks to harmonize regulatory frameworks across member states. Furthermore, the proposed legislation would modify the securities prospectus requirement, reflecting Estonia’s proactive approach towards regulatory evolution in line with broader European directives.

Estonia’s crypto-friendly evolution

Estonia first positioned itself as a crypto-friendly jurisdiction in 2017, enacting legislation that facilitated the establishment and operation of cryptocurrency companies while streamlining registration processes, including introducing e-residency. However, the country implemented tighter regulations in 2020 following a non-crypto-related corruption scandal, signaling a shift towards a more cautious regulatory stance.

As Estonia progresses towards implementing comprehensive regulation for cryptocurrency service providers, stakeholders across the industry await the outcome of the forthcoming parliamentary vote with keen interest. With the potential for heightened penalties and closer supervision by the Financial Supervision Authority, the proposed legislation underscores Estonia’s commitment to fostering a robust and compliant cryptocurrency ecosystem while aligning with evolving European regulatory standards.

Estonia advances cryptocurrency regulation bill

The government has approved a bill to regulate cryptocurrency service providers, a significant development for Estonia’s cryptocurrency landscape. This decision marks a crucial step towards comprehensive oversight of the burgeoning crypto sector within the country. However, the bill’s journey to becoming law hinges on a successful parliamentary vote.

Approval of the bill by the government signifies the recognition of the need for enhanced regulation and accountability within the industry. Cryptocurrency service providers, previously overseen by the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), would now fall under the supervision of the Financial Supervision Authority (FSA). This shift aims to strengthen regulatory oversight and ensure compliance with Anti-Money Laundering (AML) regulations.


The bill carries significant implications for Estonia’s cryptocurrency landscape. By bringing cryptocurrency service providers under the FSA’s supervision, the government positions itself to mitigate risks associated with the industry while fostering trust and confidence among investors and consumers. The supervision by the FSA will provide a framework for enhanced regulatory oversight and accountability, aligning Estonia with international best practices.

The parliamentary vote to determine the fate of the bill is of utmost importance. If the bill successfully passes, it will become enshrined in Estonian law, solidifying the country’s commitment to embracing the potential of cryptocurrencies while ensuring a secure and transparent environment for market participants. The outcome of the vote will shape the future of cryptocurrency regulation in Estonia and contribute to the country’s growing reputation as a crypto-friendly jurisdiction.

In conclusion, Estonia’s advances in cryptocurrency regulation demonstrate its determination to establish a comprehensive framework that promotes investor protection, combats financial crimes, and aligns with evolving European regulatory standards. With the supervision of cryptocurrency service providers by the Financial Supervision Authority, Estonia strengthens its position as a responsible and forward-thinking jurisdiction in the global cryptocurrency landscape. The proposed heightened penalties for AML violations and modifications to securities prospectus requirements further reflect Estonia’s commitment to ensuring compliance and fostering a secure environment for cryptocurrency transactions. As the parliamentary vote approaches, all eyes are on Estonia to see how it will shape the future of cryptocurrency regulation in the country and set an example for others to follow.

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