Anchorage Digital co-founder and president Diogo Mónica has called for regulatory clarity in the United States, which he said remains muddy due to the politicization of Web3 technology and a lack of coordinated effort from the industry.
Speaking to Cointelegraph ahead of the company’s push into the Asian market, Mónica said there was a night-and-day difference between the regulatory experience in Singapore compared to the United States.
“Singapore, it really is a breath of fresh air. […] It’s very different to have one regulator,” Mónica said, adding regardless of the asset type it’s the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), the country’s central bank, “that you interact with for everything.”
While in the U.S., he believes there’s “basically no clarity” with little information on where assets legally fit, adding even if a company understands the rules governing an asset “you barely know which regulator you actually have to engage with:”
“We have 15 different regulators, and all of them are fighting in the public eye for dominance of the industry and making contradicting statements. What we want is clarity. We want some kind of regulation.”
Mónica said the U.S. made Web3 a partisan issue, politicizing the technology and labeling it as left or right wing, which afterward became “political jockeying sticks versus actually being [about the] technology.”
“I have no idea how we did this, but it’s supposed to be bipartisan, it’s not ‘blue’ or ‘red’ it’s supposed to be, in the case of Bitcoin, ‘gold,’ right? It's ‘digital gold’, so that’s the color it should be.”
He believes the industry’s lack of a “concentrated and coordinated approach” in communicating certain aspects, such as its environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) message, has played a part in this, though high-profile mistakes have also contributed to the issue.
“Of course, there’s been tons of unforced errors,” Mónica added, making particular reference to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) crackdown on celebrities who promoted cryptocurrencies.
He also mentioned the collapse of the Terra ecosystem and how the industry “should have self regulated” beforehand by being more explicit about what an algorithmic stablecoin is:
“Lots of people knew this, the code was open source, we all knew what was happening and still we allowed it to get to $40 billion without a lot of without a lot of naysayers.”
Mónica thinks people were “lulled” into a thought pattern of “things only go up and things only go right,” adding that now, “we’re paying for it.”
Anchorage provides infrastructure for institutions to enable digital asset custody, exchange, staking and other Web3-related services, it was the first crypto firm in the U.S. to receive a national crypto bank charter in January 2021.