NZ urged to embrace cryptocurrency: new report

Kathryn Ryan interviews the report's principal researcher Alex Sims, on RNZ's Nine to Noon.

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Associate Professor Alex Sims

A central bank-issued cryptocurrency, thriving cryptocurrency exchanges and the ability for businesses to trade in GST-free cryptocurrency are needed if Aotearoa New Zealand is to enjoy the vast potential benefits from this technology, a new report finds.

Most people have heard of Bitcoin after its spectacular rise and crash, but it is just one of hundreds of cryptocurrencies – some much faster and cheaper. And cryptocurrencies are just one use of blockchain – a game-changing technology.

Based on research funded by the New Zealand Law Foundation’s Information Law and Policy Project, a team of legal and banking experts has recommended a regulatory framework for blockchain.

Their report, out today, warns against the Government attempting to ban the use of cryptocurrencies and argues the Government should instead actively support New Zealand becoming a blockchain and financial technology (fintech) hub.

“Cryptocurrencies are here to stay,” says principal researcher Alex Sims, Associate Professor of Commercial Law at the University of Auckland Business School.


Listen to Kathryn Ryan's interview with Alex Sims on RNZ.

Read the full report “Regulating Cryptocurrencies in New Zealand” on the Law Foundation website.