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France
6.73 Neutral Environment
France
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France seeks European leadership in the legislative regulation of blockchain and cryptocurrencies. The government put in place a policy to make the country more attractive for national and foreign start-ups, and to be a role model for the emerging European blockchain regulation.
Regulation of the crypto industry in France began in April 2016 with a government decree on "bons de caisse" (cash vouchers), which introduced blockchain and distributed ledger technology to the French legislation.

While the attitude towards blockchain is definitely positive, the position on blockchain is far from being clear. The main opponent of Bitcoin is the French central bank (Bank of France, Banque de France), which consistently points to risks associated with the use of cryptocurrencies and even introduced a new term — crypto-assets — as "cryptocurrencies perform the functions of money only to a small extent".

The French Government is also seeking to tighten up the regulation for cryptocurrencies, but a working group under the Ministry of Finance led by Jean-Pierre Landau recommended that strict regulation should be avoided, because cryptocurrencies are still too vague a phenomenon and legislation cannot capture its changing nature.

On April 11, 2019, the French National Assembly passed the PACTE (plan d'action pour la croissance et la transformation des entreprises) bill. The law creates a legal framework for ICOs and regulates activities of digital asset service providers. The law also includes both optional and mandatory licensing and specifies the types of funds that can be invested in crypto-assets. Also in April 2018, the Council of State reduced the tax rate on trade in cryptocurrencies.
Neutral Political Environment
6.0 points
Overall, French regulators and legislators are positive about blockchain, as well as knowledgeable about the technology itself, due to the existence of numerous working groups to study blockchain. France's favorable attitude to blockchain is primarily due to its desire to lead the EU in blockchain matters.

As for the attitude to cryptocurrencies, it is more critical, the main skeptic being the country's Central Bank. At the same time, French regulators do not attempt to limit the cryptocurrency business in the country, but, on the contrary, try creating a comfortable framework for it. Considering its approach to be correct, the government is pushing the EU to adopt pan-European French-style blockchain and cryptocurrency rules.
Neutral Legal Environment
4.93 points
Regulatory Convergence
The regulation of blockchain and cryptocurrencies is not within the competence of a single body. Among the subjects involved in the regulation of relationships, the most active are The Financial Markets Authority (AMF) and The French government, represented by the Ministry of Economy. Overall, there have been no contradictions in approaches of various regulators that could lead to serious legal conflicts.

Definiteness of Legal Regulation
The legal relations associated with the use of blockchain and cryptocurrencies are regulated by various legislative acts and regulators' decisions. A number of rules are specifically designed to regulate blockchain, in which France takes special pride, some segments apply legislation by analogy, as well as pan-European legislation.

The regulatory framework in France is formed by PACTE, which regulates ICOs and digital asset providers. At the same time, there is no legislation in France in the field of smart contracts, mining or taxation, and the status of cryptocurrencies is not clearly defined.

Stability of Legal Regulation
The legislative process cannot be said to be complete. It is reported that the government is preparing ICO taxation standards, and the status of cryptocurrencies, smart contracts and mining remains unresolved in the country.

Adequacy of Legal Regulation
Overall, the French government is currently working to establish an enabling regulatory framework for crypto business and blockchain technology development. The main feature (and pride) of French regulation is its legislation regulating the scope of blockchain that introduced in the legal terminology the definition of "blockchain" and "distributed ledger technology". However, there are problems with ICO taxation, cryptocurrency banking support etc.
Enabling Infrastructure Environment
9.27 points
France has a well-developed telecommunications infrastructure. The country ranks 9th among 193 countries in the UN Global E-Government Development Index. France ranks 32d in the WB's Doing Business 2019 rankings.