Because of its precarious relations with the European Union, Gibraltar seems to lose from Malta in the race of “crypto paradise” in Western Europe to win new investments, writes Bloomberg.
Some investors at Delta Summit in Malta this week admitted, they chose the island state as a pillar of the region thanks to its direct access to the single market
The traditional havens of Gibraltar and Switzerland were rejected as options because they lacked the same advantage.
Malta is largely targeting cryptocurrencies, promoting itself as an island after Prime Minister Joseph Muscat gave a key speech at the event. Smaller jurisdictions are seen as more agile in their ability to set rules to allow crypto-companies to thrive.
However, the country has its own problems. The European Commission is preparing to issue formal mandatory requirements to Malta’s financial regulator to strengthen the enforcement of anti-money laundering rules, according to the Financial Times.
The island captures an incredible share of the crypto market, according to a study by Morgan Stanley. One of the largest cryptocurrency websites – Binance is about to move to the island and is working with other investors to create Founders Bank, an institution serving digital clients registered in Malta.
“Uncertainty is something we want to avoid,” says Willie Roman, operational director of LXDX, which rejects Gibraltar in favor of Malta as a regional home. “We dont want to invest so much time and capital just to find ourselves in a difficult situation at the end.”