The Virtual Currency Regulation Review: Sweden

Introduction to the legal and regulatory framework

Virtual currencies are recognised as property under Swedish law, as it is possible for intangibles to have the legal status of property without a particular statute explicitly granting this status to a specific category of intangibles.2 Consequently, it is legally possible to own virtual currencies under Swedish law, and virtual currencies are afforded the same general protection as other types of property under the legal concept of ownership.

Swedish law does not contain a comprehensive regime governing virtual currencies as such. There are, to a limited extent, specific regulations regarding certain activities relating to virtual currencies that subject custodian wallet providers and virtual currency exchanges to regulatory registration requirements and requirements to comply with the Swedish Anti-Money Laundering Act (the AML Act), but operations relating to virtual currencies are otherwise largely unregulated under Swedish law. Depending on the characteristics of the virtual currencies concerned, it is also possible for them to be included under more general legal frameworks; for example, to the extent that they constitute financial instruments.

In recent years, following the increasing popularity of virtual currencies, and in particular consumers' interest in investing and trading in them, both national and international regulatory authorities, including the Swedish Financial Supervisory Authority (SFSA), have issued repeated warning statements relating to virtual currencies and initial coin offerings (ICOs), noting the lack of applicable regulation in many material aspects.

The current status of virtual currencies (and various operations involving them) as being largely unregulated under Swedish law may fundamentally change within the coming few years. In September 2020, the European Commission took the first step in what may become a paradigm shift by proposing a significantly more comprehensive framework for the regulation of virtual currencies, as part of its 'digital finance package'. This proposal includes several legislative acts, such as a proposed regulation on markets in cryptoassets (the MiCA regulation), a proposed regulation on a pilot regime for market infrastructures based on distributed ledger technology and amendments to the existing framework of securities and investment laws to explicitly include financial instruments based on distributed ledger technology. The proposed legislative acts would alter the legal framework for virtual currencies from a multitude of perspectives, including for issuers of virtual currencies, operators of market infrastructures for trading in virtual currencies, virtual currency exchange service providers and virtual currency wallet providers. The proposal is, at the time of writing, under review as part of the EU legislative process and has not yet resulted in any applicable legislation.3

Securities and investment laws

It has not been explicitly settled whether virtual currencies may qualify as financial instruments under Swedish law. The key to making this determination is whether virtual currencies constitute transferable securities, as defined in the Swedish Securities Market Act, which implements the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID) and MiFID II.4 The European Securities Markets Authority (ESMA) has stated that virtual currencies may, depending on how an offering of coins or tokens is structured, constitute transferable securities.5 In response to a survey undertaken by ESMA in the summer of 2018 regarding the qualification of virtual currencies as financial instruments in the EU, the SFSA expressed the view that dematerialised instruments can qualify as securities if the instruments can be registered in a manner that has the same legal effect, specifically in regard to rights in rem, as possession and presentation of a physical certificate, such as a coupon bond or a bearer bond. Registration based solely on contractual grounds is not sufficient to meet this requirement. The SFSA concluded that it cannot generally be ascertained whether virtual currencies can qualify as securities, attributing this to the lack of precedent on how an acquirer of virtual currencies can obtain rights in rem under Swedish law. In addition to noting this uncertainty, the SFSA expressed the view that an instrument must entail rights to its holder or obligations to its issuer, or both, which are legally enforceable. Consequently, whether this requirement is met in relation to any particular virtual currency or ICO must be assessed in each individual case.

In its survey regarding legal qualification of virtual currencies, ESMA recognised that there are differences between the positions taken by national regulators with respect to the interpretation of the definitions of financial instruments and other related terms in MiFID II. One step towards a more uniform approach with regard to the potential classification of virtual currencies as financial instruments across the EU was taken in September 2020, when the European Commission published a proposal for the definition of financial instruments in MiFID II to be amended to explicitly include financial instruments issued using distributed ledger technology.6

While the rights associated with a token may vary with every issuance, a few general observations and remarks can be made in relation to the possibility of classifying various categories of virtual currencies as transferable securities (and thereby financial instruments).

Currency tokens such as Bitcoin and Ethereum are intended to be used as a general means of payment and function in a similar manner to regular currencies. These virtual currencies are unlikely to constitute transferable securities as they generally do not constitute securities. The ownership and possession or the equivalent registration on the blockchain of currency tokens usually does not confer any rights on the issuer or any other physical or legal person, which is a prerequisite of such tokens being considered securities. In particular, such registration is not legally recognised under Swedish law as granting rights in rem, and is based solely on contractual grounds. As a consequence, currency tokens generally fall outside the scope of the definition of securities. In cases where they are classified as securities owing to them granting such rights, and are negotiable on the capital market, they may still fall outside the scope of the definition of transferable securities under MiFID II on the basis of being regarded as instruments of payment.

Utility tokens function mainly as either a means of payment in a specific setting with no use as a general means of payment (e.g., paying for services or goods from a specific vendor) or as granting access to a service or product through ownership of the tokens. The product or service does not always exist at the time of the ICO. In general, these tokens do not constitute transferable securities in the sense of the definition under MiFID II; they appear not to fit into the purposes and intentions of MiFID II and other capital markets law. In essence, utility tokens function more as a means of purchase of a product or a service, with an added element of uncertainty regarding whether the product or service will ultimately be deliverable, as it was not available at the time of purchasing the tokens. The various problems that may arise in the context of these issuances are mainly dealt with through legislation other than capital markets law; for instance, consumer protection law. However, if tokens are being marketed with the expectation of being able to be sold for a profit as the project that the tokens finance develops, there is an increased possibility of the tokens being classified as transferable securities, provided that they are securities and meet the requirements of transferability and being negotiable on the capital market. Further, if the tokens give rights to financial benefits, such as dividends or put options with a financial gain in the event that the underlying project of the issuance is successful, the tokens are likely to be considered transferable securities.

Investment tokens are tokens whose main purpose is being an investment and these generally confer financial rights and, in some cases, participation rights analogous to shares in a company. Investment tokens are likely to be considered transferable securities, provided that they are securities and meet the requirements of transferability and being negotiable on the capital market.

The classification of tokens is not absolute, which means that some tokens may have attributes from different classes. An analysis of the rights of tokens must be done on a case-by-case basis to determine whether they constitute transferable securities. If a virtual currency does qualify as a financial instrument, provision of investment services (for example, operating trading platforms, executing client orders or providing investment advice) relating to that virtual currency is subject to securities and investment laws and regulations.

The recently proposed MiCA regulation, if and when enacted, will also bring these types of traditional investment services into regulation when provided in relation to virtual currencies that do not qualify as financial instruments. Under the proposed MiCA regulation, such service providers will be subject to general requirements to obtain authorisation, manage conflicts of interest, comply with certain organisational requirements and conduct of business rules, etc., as well as additional requirements specific to each type of service provided. The requirements that are proposed for such providers of 'pseudo-investment services' relating to virtual currencies are substantively similar to those that are currently imposed on providers of traditional investment services (i.e., investment firms) under MiFID II and the Swedish Securities Market Act.

Banking and money transmission

i Banking activities

Transmitting transactions using virtual currencies does not constitute regulated banking activity pursuant to the Swedish Banking Act, as payments using virtual currencies are not made through a general payment system. Whether institutions transmitting transactions using virtual currencies could potentially fall within the scope of the banking legislation in the future if payment systems using virtual currencies have grown to such an extent that they constitute general payment systems has not been established definitively. It is, however, notable that the Swedish legislature has discussed whether institutions transmitting payments using e-money could be subject to banking legislation if such payments became common to the extent that they could be considered as being made in a general payment system.7

ii Payment services

Virtual currencies do not constitute funds as defined in the Swedish Payment Services Act implementing the Payment Services Directive (PSD) and PSD2.8 Accordingly, services provided relating to virtual currencies do not constitute payment services regulated under the Payment Services Act.

The recently proposed MiCA regulation will, if and when enacted, define a certain type of virtual currency whose main purpose is to be used as a means of exchange and that purports to maintain a stable value by referring to the value of a fiat currency that is legal tender, as 'e-money tokens'. Furthermore, the proposal explicitly declares that such e-money tokens are to be deemed to be e-money under the E-money Directive9 and the Swedish E-money Act, and consequently they would constitute funds and fall within the scope of the Swedish Payment Services Act.

iii Other classification matters

Virtual currencies may constitute instruments of payment under Swedish law.10 This term has no explicit legal definition but generally encompasses any instrument that is intended to be used to make payment, is not subject to transfer restrictions and is of some value to the recipient, and therefore may constitute an instrument of payment from a general law of obligations perspective.11

However, virtual currencies are not recognised as legal tender as there is no legal obligation to accept them as payment.12

The Swedish Central Bank (Riksbanken) is currently assessing the possibility of establishing, and backing, an e-currency that may be developed and issued as a token-based alternative form of Sweden's official currency (see Section IX.ii)

Anti-money laundering

The Swedish Currency Exchange Act requires certain types of financial institutions (which are otherwise largely unregulated and unsupervised) to comply with anti-money laundering provisions.

As part of Sweden's implementation of the EU's Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive (the Fifth AML Directive),13 the scope of the Currency Exchange Act now includes custodian wallet providers and providers of virtual currency exchange services. For the purposes of the Act, custodian wallet providers are defined as providers of services to safeguard private cryptographic keys on behalf of their customers, and to hold, store and transfer virtual currencies; and providers of virtual currency exchange services are defined as service providers who offer exchange services between virtual currencies and (1) Swedish or foreign fiat currency, (2) e-money (as defined in the Swedish E-money Act), or (3) other virtual currencies.

The concept of a virtual currency for the purposes of the Currency Exchange Act is the same as in the Fifth AML Directive, namely a digital representation of value that is not issued or guaranteed by a central bank or a public authority, is not necessarily attached to a legally established currency and does not possess a legal status of currency or money but is accepted by natural or legal persons as a means of exchange, and that can be transferred, stored and traded electronically. This definition will ordinarily include currency tokens and, to a lesser extent, investment tokens. However, utility tokens will generally not fall within the definition, as it has been stated in recitals to the Fifth AML Directive that the concept of virtual currencies is distinct from, for example, in-game currencies that can be used exclusively within a specific game environment.

Notably, the inclusion of providers of exchange services between virtual currencies goes beyond the requirements in the Fifth AML Directive, whereby Sweden has elected to impose a 'gold-plated' regime, imposing requirements beyond the minimum requirements under the common EU standard.

The Currency Exchange Act does not apply to a number of institutions that are subject to supervision pursuant to other legislation, such as credit institutions, investment firms, payment institutions and insurance companies.

An institution that falls within the scope of the Currency Exchange Act is required to apply for registration with the SFSA prior to commencing its regulated activities. To become registered, an institution must show that there are grounds to assume that the operations will be conducted in a manner compliant with the applicable anti-money laundering legislation, and the owners of the institution must pass an ownership assessment procedure. The ownership assessment procedure prescribed by the Currency Exchange Act constitutes an assessment of whether any individual applying for registration under the Act has materially failed to adhere to his or her professional obligations or has been convicted of a serious criminal offence. In the case of legal entities applying for registration, this assessment shall be made in relation to all individuals in the entity's managing body and all holders of a qualifying holding in the entity. A qualifying holding is defined as a direct or indirect holding representing 10 per cent or more of the shares or votes in the legal entity, or both, or, in other cases, a holding that makes it possible to exercise significant influence over the management of the legal entity.

Virtual currency providers within the scope of the Currency Exchange Act must consequently comply with the rules of the AML Act, which include requirements to prepare a risk assessment, conduct customer due diligence and monitor and report suspicious transactions.

Regulation of exchanges

Depending on the nature of an exchange, different legal regimes may be applicable. As described in Section IV, providers of exchange services between virtual currencies, between virtual and fiat currencies or between virtual currencies and e-money are subject to registration requirements and compliance with Swedish AML legislation. If an exchange is dealing with virtual currencies that are considered to be financial instruments, the requirements for operating markets of this kind may be applicable and will require authorisation by the SFSA.14

The recently proposed MiCA regulation will, if and when enacted, include authorisation requirements and various other regulatory requirements for operators of trading platforms for virtual currencies. It also proposes such requirements for providers of services for exchange of virtual currencies for fiat currency or for other virtual currencies, which are currently only subject to a more limited regulatory framework (see Section IV).

Another accompanying part of the European Commission's digital finance package is the proposed regulation on a pilot regime for market infrastructures based on distributed ledger technology,15 with the aim to create an EU framework that both enables markets in cryptoassets and promotes the tokenisation of traditional financial assets and wider use of distributed ledger technology in financial services. The proposed regulation establishes (among other things) operating conditions for market infrastructures based on distributed ledger technology, limitations on the securities admitted to trading on or settled by such market infrastructures, and permissions to make use of such market infrastructures. It governs both multilateral trading facilities based on distributed ledger technology and securities settlement systems based on this technology that settle transactions in transferable securities that are based on digital ledger technology and that fall within the scope of the definition of financial instruments under MiFID II.16 Under the proposed regulation, these market infrastructures would be able to apply to be exempt from certain requirements that would otherwise apply under EU financial services legislation.

Regulation of miners

Virtual currency mining activities as such are not regulated under Swedish law. There are no licensing, registration or authorisation requirements specifically applicable to virtual currency mining activities. The SFSA has acknowledged virtual currency mining as a well-established form of activity within the fintech industry in Sweden.17

There are no restrictions under Swedish law prohibiting, limiting or otherwise stipulating any mandatory provisions specifically applicable to the sale of virtual currency mining machines in Sweden. Provided that such machines are not sold to consumers, the parties to any sale of virtual currency mining machines are at liberty to set out the terms applicable to the transaction at their own discretion.

Certain computer and software products are subject to authorisation requirements when exported from Sweden, pursuant to the Dual-Use Items Regulation,18 which is directly applicable in all EU Member States. Virtual currency mining machines will generally not fall within the categories of computers and software subject to the Dual-Use Items Regulation. However, as the scope of the Regulation is, in part, purely capacity-based, it cannot be categorically ruled out that certain virtual currency mining machines may fall within the scope of the Regulation (e.g., machines exceeding a certain processing power or being specifically designed to be operable at extreme temperatures), and thus authorisation would be required to export these products from Sweden.

Regulation of issuers and sponsors

i Prospectus obligations

If tokens are considered to be transferable securities, they may be subject to the Prospectus Regulation and Swedish law and regulations that implement the European prospectus regime. If transferable securities are offered to the public or are being listed on a regulated market, a prospectus must be prepared unless an exemption is applicable.19 It is customary as part of the ICO process to publish a white paper, which usually describes the project and related topics in brief. To date, the content of these white papers has not, in general, met the Swedish prospectus requirements. It remains to be seen whether and to what extent the recently published legislative proposals significantly extending the scope of regulation of issuers of virtual currency tokens will lead to developments and a more close alignment between prospectuses and white papers.

ii Alternative investment funds

A public offering of coins or tokens of a virtual currency may constitute an alternative investment fund as defined in the Swedish Alternative Investment Fund Managers Act (the AIFM Act) to the extent that such an offering is used to raise capital from a number of investors with a view to investing the capital in accordance with a defined investment policy.20 Similarly, as in relation to the definition of financial instruments discussed in Section II, offerings of virtual currencies will typically not constitute alternative investment funds, but owing to the broad range and varying nature of virtual currencies, it cannot be categorically ruled out that an offering thereof could constitute an alternative investment fund, in which case a number of obligations under the AIFM Act would apply.

iii Proposed legislation for currently unregulated issuers

Among the proposed amendments to the regulatory status of virtual currencies within the EU are the rules proposed under the MiCA regulation regarding offerings and marketing to the public of virtual currencies, and on issuers of virtual currencies. In line with one of the primary objectives of the MiCA regulation, to ensure financial stability, particular focus is placed on issuers of asset-referenced tokens, commonly referred to as stablecoins, which the European Commission has identified as having the potential to become widely accepted and potentially systemic, and which thereby entail potential risks to financial stability and orderly monetary policy.

The proposed MiCA regulation significantly alters the regulatory landscape for issuers of virtual currency tokens by imposing an obligation on issuers to publish a white paper with certain mandatory information disclosure requirements and to make prior notification of the white papers to national competent authorities. The requirement to publish a white paper is proposed to apply generally to any intended public offering of virtual currency tokens or admission of virtual currency tokens to trading on a trading platform. A few exceptions are proposed, including for offers to fewer than 150 persons per EU Member State, offers where the total consideration is less than €1 million over a period of 12 months, and offers that are exclusively addressed to qualified investors and where the virtual currency can only be held by such investors.

Issuers of asset-referenced tokens (stablecoins) are subject to significant additional regulation under the proposed MiCA regulation. For these purposes, the MiCA regulation defines asset-referenced tokens as a type of cryptoasset that purports to maintain a stable value by referring to the value of several fiat currencies that are legal tender, one or several commodities or one or several cryptoassets, or a combination of these kinds of assets. Among the additional requirements for issuers of stablecoins (as opposed to other types of virtual currencies) are requirements for issuers to obtain authorisation from competent authorities (unless the issuer is exempt from this requirement because its outstanding amount of stablecoins is below €5 million or because its stablecoins can only be held by qualified investors), have their white papers approved by authorities, maintain governance arrangements and comply with ongoing information obligations toward the holders of tokens and various other conduct of business rules.

Criminal and civil fraud and enforcement

Swedish legislation criminalising, inter alia, fraud, embezzlement and money laundering is relatively modern in the sense that it criminalises these actions regardless of whether they relate to traditional money or virtual currencies. For example, neither fraud nor embezzlement require the transfer of any money. Rather, the relevant criterion is whether the action entails a profit or gain for the perpetrator and a loss for the victim, which can be the case even where the property embezzled or to which the fraud relates is a virtual currency. In a similar vein, money laundering is criminalised where the conducted action relates to money or any other property that is derived from criminal activities. Accordingly, the broad scope of the provisions covers actions taken to hide the criminal source of virtual currencies to the same extent as traditional money, as virtual currencies constitute property under Swedish law.

With effect from 31 May 2021, Sweden has implemented the Directive on combating fraud and the counterfeiting of non-cash means of payment.21 The Directive and the corresponding Swedish legislation have criminalised fraudulent use of non-cash means of payment. Non-cash means of payment are defined to include, inter alia, instruments enabling transfers of virtual currency. For these purposes, a virtual currency is defined as a digital representation of value that is not issued or guaranteed by a central bank or a public authority, is not necessarily attached to a legally established currency and does not possess the legal status of a currency or money but is accepted by natural or legal persons as a means of exchange, and that can be transferred, stored and traded electronically.

The recently proposed MiCA regulation will, if and when enacted, criminalise market abuse involving virtual currencies and put in place rules to prevent such abuse, similar to the current rules for financial instruments set out in the Market Abuse Regulation.22 The proposed measures to prevent market abuse include requirements on disclosing insider information for issuers of virtual currencies admitted to trading on a trading platform for virtual currencies operated by an authorised operator. Furthermore, it includes prohibitions on insider dealing, market manipulation and unlawful disclosure of inside information.

Looking ahead

i Common EU regulatory framework for virtual currencies

Several parts of this chapter describe the proposal published by the European Commission in September 2020 for the MiCA regulation and other accompanying legislative acts governing various aspects of operations involving virtual currencies. The proposal, which mainly covers virtual currencies falling outside the existing EU financial services legislation, represents the first concrete action to establish a common approach among EU Member States in this area. Furthermore, it reflects a paradigm shift by proposing that virtual currencies, which are currently largely unregulated, should instead be regulated to a significant extent. It covers a multitude of regulatory aspects, ranging from offerings and marketing to the public of virtual currencies, procedures for authorisation of certain virtual currency token issuers (for example, issuers of stablecoins) and the approval of their white papers, regulatory obligations for issuers of such tokens, requirements for providers of pseudo-investment services relating to virtual currencies, as well as for virtual currency exchange services providers, and rules to prevent market abuse involving virtual currencies. At the time of writing, the proposal is under review by the Council of the European Union. While the European Commission has expressed its intention for the proposal to lead to legislation that would be in place by 2024,23 it cannot be predicted whether it will be possible to achieve this and at present there are numerous steps and processes in the EU legislative procedure remaining before the proposal can become applicable law. Furthermore, it remains uncertain whether or to what extent the current proposal will be substantively amended during the legislative process and whether the legislative initiative will ultimately be realised as harmonised EU legislation.

ii Swedish e-krona initiative

Riksbanken is currently assessing the possibility of establishing, and backing, an e-currency: the e-krona.

Since February 2020, Riksbanken has been running a pilot project with a third-party technical service provider to develop a technical platform for a blockchain-based e-krona. The solution is based on digital tokens that are portable, cannot be forged or copied (double-spent) and enable instantaneous peer-to-peer payments. The tokens would be guaranteed a fixed value corresponding to Swedish kronor, so that the value of the user's funds would always be identical irrespective of whether they were held in the form of cash, a bank account balance or e-currency. The technical solution for the e-krona currently being considered is based on the e-krona being issued and redeemed exclusively by Riksbanken, while the e-krona would be distributed via participants in a private e-krona network administered by Riksbanken (e.g., banks).

In a report published in April 2021, Riksbanken evaluated the first phase of its pilot project,24 commenting that the e-krona would not legally be classified as a virtual currency if based on the technical solution currently being considered, whereby the e-krona would not be decentralised.

The pilot project has been extended to a second phase, which will include continued analysis of legal aspects of the e-krona, as well as continued technical developments. In addition, the government has instructed that a report be prepared for publication in November 2022, covering, inter alia, an analysis of the need for Riksbanken to issue an e-currency, as well as the legislative amendments needed to enable it to do so.25

Footnotes

1 Niclas Rockborn is a partner and Rikard Sundstedt is a senior associate at Gernandt & Danielsson Advokatbyrå.

2 See, inter alia¸ Government Bill 2004/05:18, p. 57. cf. the position under English law following the judgment in OBG v. Allan, United Kingdom House of Lords Decision.

3 See Section IX for additional information on expected future developments regarding this proposal.

4 Directive 2004/39/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 21 April 2004 on markets in financial instruments, and Directive 2014/65/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 15 May 2014 on markets in financial instruments, respectively.

5 See ESMA's statement dated 13 November 2017, Reference No. ESMA50-157-828 and ESMA's Advice on Initial Coin Offerings and Crypto-Assets dated 9 January 2019, Reference No. ESMA50-157-1391.

6 Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council amending Directives 2006/43/EC, 2009/65/EC, 2009/138/EU, 2011/61/EU, EU/2013/36, 2014/65/EU, (EU) 2015/2366 and EU/2016/2341 (COM/2020/596 final).

7 Government Bill 2002/03:139, p. 195.

8 Directive 2007/64/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 13 November 2007 on payment services in the internal market and Directive (EU) 2015/2366 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 November 2015 on payment services in the internal market, respectively.

9 Directive 2009/110/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 September 2009 on the taking up, pursuit and prudential supervision of the business of electronic money institutions.

10 These are not to be mistaken for payment instruments as defined in the Payment Services Act, corresponding to the definition thereof in PSD2.

11 Elgebrant, Emil, Kryptovalutor: Särskild rättsverkan vid innehav av bitcoins och andra liknande betalningsmedel, Wolters Kluwer Sverige AB, Stockholm, 2016, s. 40. See also Lindskog, Stefan, Betalning, Nordstedts Juridik AB, Stockholm, 2014, s. 70.

12 Chapter 5 Section 2 of the Swedish Central Bank Act (1988:1385).

13 Directive (EU) 2018/843 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 30 May 2018 amending Directive (EU) 2015/849 on the prevention of the use of the financial system for the purposes of money laundering or terrorist financing.

14 Chapter 2 Section 1 and Chapter 12 Section 1 of the Securities Market Act.

15 Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on a pilot regime for market infrastructures based on distributed ledger technology (COM/2020/594 final).

16 cf. Section II regarding the accompanying proposal to amend that definition to explicitly include financial instruments based on distributed ledger technology.

17 See the SFSA's report, 'The Authority's role in relation to innovations', of 1 December 2017: http://www.fi.se/contentassets/d3cd30fe473d4a7995f0c38209ddb7f1/myndighetens-roll-kring-innovationer.pdf.

18 Council Regulation (EC) No. 428/2009 of 5 May 2009 setting up a Community regime for the control of exports, transfer, brokering and transit of dual-use items. The scope of the Dual-Use Items Regulation is set out in Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2017/2268 of 26 September 2017 amending Council Regulation (EC) No. 428/2009 of 5 May 2009 setting up a Community regime for the control of exports, transfers, brokering and transit of dual-use items.

19 Regulation (EU) 2017/1129 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 14 June 2017 on the prospectus to be published when securities are offered to the public or admitted to trading on a regulated market.

20 cf. ESMA's statement Reference No. ESMA50-157-828.

21 Directive (EU) 2019/713 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 April 2019.

22 Regulation (EU) No. 596/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 April 2014 on market abuse (market abuse regulation).

23 Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions on a Digital Finance Strategy for the EU (COM/2020/591 final).

24 See the Riksbanken report, E-kronapiloten: etapp 1, dated April 2021: https://www.riksbank.se/globalassets/media/rapporter/e-krona/2021/e-kronapiloten-etapp-1.pdf.

25 Kommittédirektiv: Statens roll på betalningsmarknaden, 10 December 2020, dir. 2020:133.

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