Jonathan Galea: Malta is readying itself to take over as global blockchain hub


Despite being one of the smaller nations in Europe, Malta has been a massive player in the blockchain industry. The nation has come to be renowned as the blockchain island, and aptly so as it has strived to create an enabling environment for blockchain and crypto startups. Jonathan Galea, the managing director of Blockchain Advisory Ltd has been heavily involved in the blockchain industry in Malta and during the Malta AI and Blockchain Summit, he spoke with CoinGeek’s Becky Liggero about the regulations in the country and how Malta is fostering innovation while still protecting investors.

In 2018, the Malta Digital Innovation Authority Bill was enacted that sought to regulate service providers such as crypto exchanges and wallets. Malta also enacted the Innovative Technology Arrangements Bill that regulates the auditing of smart contracts. These and other regulations have enabled Malta to create an environment which encourages the innovators to develop their applications in the country, all while protecting the investors, Galea told CoinGeek.

Galea also sought to reassure investors that initial coin offerings are alive and aren’t going anywhere. While acknowledging that initial coin offerings (ICOs) have taken quite a hit in recent months, he believes that the unique fundraising method they introduced will continue to be utilized by many developers to raise funds for their projects.

And for those who think that security token offerings have come to replace ICOs, Galea disagrees. Security token offerings (STOs) have always been around, he stated. What has changed is the mode of distribution of the securities, with blockchain technology becoming the technology of choice for the process. STOs will in no way impact the ICO market, Galea stated, further expressing his belief that ICOs will bounce back to former glory soon.

Galea also pointed out that blockchain will greatly impact the gaming industry:

One of the industries that stand to gain hugely from blockchain technology is the gaming industry. And Malta has seen this, and in fact, the Malta Gaming Authority has launched a sandbox covering two main types of business activities – those traditional operators that accept cryptocurrency as a means of payment and those operators that utilize blockchain technology.

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