Australia continues its pro-cryptocurrency stance with the country’s financial regulator, the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC) now having officially registered 246 cryptocurrency exchanges.

The land down under continues to maintain its cryptocurrency profile in the global arena. The eastern state of Queensland largely leads the way with AUSTRAC issuing its latest cryptocurrency license in December to US-based cryptocurrency exchange, CoinZoom.

Regulation is the key, according to many in the industry who feel it’s the reason Australia is becoming more accepting of the new technology than some other nations around the globe. Australia’s new prime minister Scott Morrison has also noted that the contributions of distributed ledger technology (DLT) and blockchain in the financial sector, suggesting that the new technology is opening “massive opportunities.”

Although the registration process with AUSTRAC can be an exacting, one industry player, Adrian Przelozny – the head of cryptocurrency exchange Independent Reserve, sees the importance of regulation in today’s crypto space.  “We always had the feeling that regulation is important to bring cryptocurrency into the mainstream,” he said, adding that the Australian banking system should be utilizing the technology in order to revamp areas of consumer data rights, open banking reforms, and new legislation.

All companies advertising cryptocurrency products must now register with AUSTRAC as new legislation was passed at the end of 2018 to protect users. Non-compliance with government agency rules will now be met with a registration refusal.

Michael McCarthy, chief market strategist at CMC Markets (which also offers Bitcoin trading) argues that the wild west attitudes have gone and, whereas in the past, government interference would have been met with disdain. The industry in Australian is now in a better space. He argues “Those newer participants in the market generally do seek regulation, they seek safety.”

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