Posted on Monday December 16th, 2019 by Ragnar Sepp

New in issuing crypto-currency license

The Estonian Parliament has passed amendments to the Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Prevention Act. The changes relate to the issuance of licenses for activities in the field of crypto-currencies: a new definition, the list of documents has been expanded, new requirements have been introduced, the size of the state fee has been increased.

According to the new definition, instead of two different types of activity: “service of exchanging a virtual currency against a fiat currency” and “virtual currency wallet service”, one type of activity is introduced: “virtual currency service“. Thus, the companies which carry out both activities shall apply for one license only, instead of two.

At the same time, the list of documents for obtaining a license has been expanded, and following documents shall be submitted additionally:

      1. The copy of the identity document according to the country of citizenship, if the entrepreneur, board member, procurist, beneficiary, company shareholder is a foreign citizen;
      2. Documents on education and business experience regarding the member of the board and the procurist;
      3. Documents indicating reliability of the member of the board and the procurist and correct business reputation of the entrepreneur;
      4. The list of all payment accounts opened for the company, together with a confirmation about the uniqueness of the payment account and the name of the payment institution.

There are new requirements for the company:

        • The registered office of the company, the location of the management and the place of business shall be in Estonia.
        • The company has a payment account opened with a credit or payment institution, or an electronic money institution located in Estonia or in the European Economic Area (EEA).
        • The share or charter capital of the company must be at least 12’000 euro, which is fully paid with money contribution.

The state fee for obtaining the license for the activities of virtual property service provider will be 3’300 Euro instead of 345 Euro now.

The law enters into force on March 10, 2020.

It is defined that the previously issued licenses for the activities of the “provider of a service of exchanging a virtual currency against a fiat currency” and the “provider of a virtual currency wallet service” are equivalent to the license of the “provider of virtual currency service”.

Nevertheless, companies holding these licenses will have to bring their activities and documents in line with the rules of the new law. The deadline is set until July 1, 2020.