French President Macron Supports Blockchain Innovations but Vows for Regulations

APR 22, 2022

The French president has been known for his ambition of making the country a “startup nation” that is friendly to new technologies and appealing to talents and capital. When campaigning for his second bid for the presidency, Emmanuel Macron expressed his favorable opinions toward Web 3.0 and the Metaverse while maintaining that regulation led by public authorities is necessary for ensuring the sector’s long-term success.

Proud of the made-in-France crypto unicorns like Ledger and Sorare, Macron aimed to strengthen Europe’s competitiveness in the Metaverse, acquiring technological independence from American and Chinese giants. In addition, he vowed that France would welcome the idea of establishing a “dematerialized museum of French history through digital histography.”

Web 3: An Opportunity Not to be Missed

In a recent interview, the presidential candidate saw Web 3 as an opportunity for Europe to reclaim its forwardness in technology.

Saying that France has historically been a strong player in digital gaming, with numerous talents working in the Metaverse and blockchain technologies, Macron advocated an ideal called the “European Metaverse.” By building technological infrastructure essential for the next generation of the Internet, Europe could become the central player in the Metaverse.

The president pointed out the potential societal drawbacks of the rapid adoption of new digital technologies. He stated that though France has the assets and talents for the Metaverse, the pace of technological acceleration has been a “major centrifugal power” between those who master the codes of digital tech and all those who are excluded. Also, he requested public authorities to develop an NFT-focused policy for regulatory bodies.

“The metaverse has a huge potential in culture and leisure thanks to its applications in music, concerts, art exhibitions, etc. We cannot consider our cultural policy without this revolution. I want our main cultural institutions to develop an NFT policy, by promoting, disseminating and protecting the digital twins or variations of their physical collections, for example.”

Emmanuel Macron. Source: AANews

Emmanuel Macron. Source: AANews

Crypto Regulations

As the European parliament had shown a hawkish tendency to tighten up regulations on digital assets by introducing the MiCA legislation (Markets in Crypto Assets), Macron supported such a move and said he didn’t believe the crypto sector shouldn’t be “self-regulated.”

“This would be neither sustainable nor democratic…We now have to ensure the uniformity of rules on the European territory to create a unified market. Given this context, I am in favor of making rapid progress on the MiCA regulation.”

The MiCA legislation is designed to regulate all digital currencies not covered under existing regulations. Robert Ophèle, chairman of France’s financial regulatory body, the Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF), previously proposed to the EU a pilot regime tailored for the crypto sector. The AMF chief suggested that a strictly limited policy regime would drive crypto-based businesses out of the EU – a stance also shared by the French president.