Only a couple of weeks ago, French finance minister Bruno Le Maire was a vocal opponent of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. However, it seems that France is not immune to the wave of political u-turns that seems to be rippling throughout the worlds governments.
South Korea were the first to u-turn, with regulators aiming to ‘develop and normalize’ cryptocurrencies. Shortly after, Putin endorsed cryptocurrencies stating how Russia could not allow themselves to fall behind the technology. Then, just recently, U.S. Congress released their 2018 economic report with an entire chapter devoted to praising cryptocurrencies!
It would appear we are finally at a tipping point regarding governments views of the highly disruptive technology that is blockchain. For it was during a speech to finance ministers at the G20 summit that Le Maire labelled cryptocurrencies as a revolution that France does not intend to miss out on, pointing out several merits of the technology.
“A revolution is underway, of which bitcoin was only the precursor. The blockchain will offer new opportunities to our start-ups, for example with the Initial Coin Offerings (ICO) that will allow them to raise funds through tokens, cryptoactives or not. It promises to create a network of trust without intermediary, to offer an increased traceability of transactions and, overall, to make the economy more efficient,”
On a less positive note, Le Maire also questioned the speculative nature of the current climate and asked the question of how investors and consumers can be protected, as well as how criminal activity can be prevented. That said, he was also open to working to create legislation and regulation to foster the growth of the industry in France.