The UK FCA Publish Discussion Paper on Distributed Ledger Technology
Regulators globally are focused on understanding industry consumers’ views on distributed ledger technology’s (DLT) potential risks and opportunities. On 10 April 2017, the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) published a discussion paper DP17/3 on DLT, and followed it with a speech at the Innovate Finance Global Summit by the Executive Director of Strategy and Competition at the FCA, Christopher Woolard.

The FCA’s Project Innovate is a leading driver of its initiative on DLT. Project Innovate was part of the FCA’s ‘regulatory sandbox’ where firms, including those developing DLT platforms, have been able to test pioneering products and solutions in regulated financial services. The FCA Discussion Paper is aimed at users and providers of DLT technology in the FCA’s financial services sector.

The tone of the FCA Discussion Paper is generally positive. It refers to the benefits of DLT, while recognising that DLT is a emerging technology and its uptake will ultimately depend on the willingness of firms to adopt it. As discussed in our alert of 2 March 2017, global regulators are paying increasing attention to DLT. The FCA encourages market participants to send their comments by 17 July 2017, for them to review and publish a summary of responses or a formal consultation paper.

To learn about the issues being considered by the FCA, click here.