Austrian Economics Minister: ‘We Do Not Need Regulation for Blockchain’

Austrian Minister for Digital and Economic Affairs, Margarete Schramboeck said that “we do not need regulation for blockchain” .

Schramboeck — who previously served as CEO of major Austrian fixed and mobile network operator A1 Telekom Austria — delivered her comments during the ANON Blockchain Summit discussion panel dedicated to “The role of government in the age of blockchain”.

Speaking about the development of appropriate regulations towards blockchain, the Minister said that “Europe has a strong tendency to overregulate. […] And then we are surprised that there are no European companies in the top 10 worldwide.”

Although Schramboeck advocated for the regulation of cryptocurrencies, she said that “we do not need regulation for Blockchain.” Last June, Board directors of the Austrian Financial Market Authority, Klaus Kumpfmueller and Helmut Ettl, also offered proposals for stricter regulations on cryptocurrencies and initial coin offerings (ICOs).

Schramboeck said that the technology is of considerable interest at the state level, but that first it is needed to “build trust in technology and skills” before those new technologies can be applied to critical public processes like voting. Schramboeck purportedly aims to actively deploy blockchain technology in various areas of public administration.

Austria has demonstrated a proactive approach in regard to blockchain research and application. Last December, the COMET Centers, which are coordinated by the Austrian Research Promotion Agency, approved the Austrian Blockchain Center in Vienna. The center will be multidisciplinary and focus on the Internet of Things, finance, energy, logistics, and applications in public administration.

In November of last year, the government of Austria supported a United Kingdom cancer research company, Lancor Scientific, that uses blockchain technolgy to detect the disease.

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