EmilianidesKatsaros continues to be at the forefront of Cyprus’s advances in the Blockchain sector. Cyprus is making steps towards regulating Blockchain and DLT technologies, as the Cypriot government already embraced Blockchain technology as an important tool for the future. In this environment, it is important to address legal issues as they arise, and before a project is advertised. We can provide blockchain legal services and guidance for blockchain companies from ideation, through fundraising, and beyond.
The Republic of Cyprus along with other EU member-states (Malta, France, Greece, Italy, Portugal and Spain) signed the joint ‘Declaration of the Southern Mediterranean Countries on Distributed Ledger Technologies’ on the 4th of December 2018, with the purpose of improving cooperation in the digital field. Cyprus’s current plan seeks to educate all stakeholders and experts in implementing DLT and blockchain technology thus advancing the public and the private sectors in Cyprus. The Government set up an ad hoc Committee in 2018 that addressed the challenges and opportunities regarding DLT and Blockchain framework in Cyprus. The Committee was tasked with providing the framework required to enable the transition to DLT/Blockchain technologies as well as identifying the roadmap needed in order to legislate and drive this transition within a year. In collaboration with other EU Member States and with the guidance of DLT/blockchain specialists, Cyprus wishes to expand, so as to be in the front line of development in the particular field. Through the advancement of DLT/blockchain innovation, Cyprus plans to change the economy, become one of Europe’s leaders in innovative technologies and enable organisations to flourish,adding the field of Artificial Intelligence to Cyprus's extreme progress. Although Blockchain was initially developed for use in cryptocurrencies, it now has a far wider scope.
Originally devised for the digital currency, Bitcoin, the tech community has now found other potential uses for the technology: smart contracts, paperless logistics, online dispute resolution, governmental registries, e-voting, ICOs, cross border money-transfer, supply chain platforms etc. These areas, although related to blockchain, remain separate. As the Cyprus Securities exchange announced recently, virtual currencies will be regulated within the year, and this will determine the manner in which one may develop an ICO or an STO as well as the differentiation between coins and tokens.
The deployment of DLT can potentially enhance transparency, combat corruption, tax evasion, money laundering, and the detection of unlawful transactions, as well as enhance the safety and integrity of recorded data, while the tamper-proof transaction records allow the modernization of public administration through the development of new administration methods. Our firm can provide counsel and assistance, as a leading law firm for regulatory challenges arising in the context of Blockchain.
Our firm will assist companies, amongst other, with the following:
- Proper legal support, that will help comply with regulations and eliminate issues with authorities
- Legal support and advise for the ICO procedure of the project
- Company incorporation and bank account opening
- Drafting of shareholders agreements
- Drafting or review of a whitepaper
- Tax and VAT advice on blockchain projects
- Advice on KYC, AML and compliance issues
- Drafting of corporate or commercial agreements
- Full scope GDPR services (Policies, DPO, legal opinions)
- Regulatory support
- Drafting of legal opinion
- Consultation on all relevant legal and corporate structure issues, that may occur during the development
- Estate Planning
- Commercial Business Litigation
- Intellectual Property Litigation
Our services are also complemented by our Advisory, Corporate and Regulatory services, which can offer a wide range of services and tailor-made solutions to help companies grow and reach their objectives.