With crypto-based investment products gaining traction in the traditional financial industry, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has published guidance for issuers and industry firms that deal in crypto investment vehicles.
The new guidance covers considerations for firms in approving and monitoring crypto-based investments, along with issues such as custody, valuation, disclosure and risk management.
Additionally, the ASIC has introduced a new crypto licensing category for regulated firms. Firms that “intend to hold underlying assets that comprise crypto-assets” will need to be licensed.
“Crypto-assets have unique characteristics and risks that must be considered by product issuers and market operators in meeting their existing regulatory obligations,” said ASIC commissioner Cathie Armour in a release.
“The good practices we published provide practical examples of how these obligations may be met, in a way that maintains investor protections and Australia’s fair, orderly and transparent markets,” she said.
The new guidance and licensing requirements follow a consultation on these issues by the ASIC carried out earlier this year.
The regulator noted that a parliamentary committee also recently made recommendations on developing a regulatory framework for crypto-assets, and it pledged to work with the government on the effort.