The French take on the blockchain

By Claude-Etienne Armingaud

On March 24, the French National Assembly hosted a day-long conference on “Blockchain: Disruption and Opportunities.”

This event aimed at raising awareness of the French elected representatives and corporate executives on blockchain issues and potential uses for the digital transformation of society as a whole.

The closing statement provided by Emmanuel Macron, the French Minister of Economy, Industry and Digital Economy, was subsequently echoed by his announcement on March 29 of the upcoming adaptation of the French finance regulatory framework in order to progressively allow the introduction of the technology.

This adaptation should first open up to experimentation on the mini-bond market, to be expanded to other tools.

Mr. Macron stated that he was “aware of the importance of the disruptive potential of the blockchain” while the regulatory framework was limited by the current French and European regulations, which prevented the use of the blockchain “in real-life situations, i.e. with real clients and not exclusively in closed beta test scenario within a given financial institution.”

It was also announced that a ministerial ordinance had just been submitted for review to the French Administrative Supreme Court (“Conseil d’État”) to allow for such experimentation in the coming weeks.

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