As regulation looms, group calls for national strategy for crypto and digital assets.
Some of Canada’s biggest crypto, blockchain, and FinTech companies have teamed up to launch a new non-profit trade association—the Canadian Web3 Council (CW3).
“Canada has fallen behind other jurisdictions that are advancing policies and defining their approach to Web3,” argues CW3.
The group aims to “position Canada as a leader in Web3 technology such as blockchain and cryptocurrency.” CW3’s eleven founding members include Dapper Labs, Ether Capital, Ledn, Figment, Wealthsimple, and Bitbuy owner WonderFi.
To date, Canadian entrepreneurs have played an important role in the development of Web3.
The country where Ethereum—one of the world’s largest blockchain platforms—was developed, has also been home to a list of leading crypto startups like Dapper Labs, the company behind NBA Top Shot.
But despite these developments, CW3 argues that “Canada has fallen behind other jurisdictions that are advancing policies and defining their approach to Web3.” The council claims that “there is an urgent need to ensure Canada and its citizens are well positioned to benefit from this emerging asset class.”
“The Canadian Web3 community has led the charge on some of the most innovative and high-valued projects globally,” stated CW3 co-founders and crypto advocates Jelena Djuric and Connor Spelliscy. “World-changing talent and creativity often starts in Canada, only to flourish elsewhere. We can’t afford to miss the opportunity to nurture these talents domestically, for the benefit of all Canadians.”
In support of its claim that Canada is falling behind on the Web3 front, CW3 cites United States (US) President Joe Biden’s recent executive order calling on the American government to research the risks and benefits of crypto and blockchain, and examine the potential of a US central bank digital currency. The council also cites the European Union’s crypto regulation efforts.
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The move follows a busy year for the crypto sector, which saw a rise in popularity, and a spike in the value of cryptocurrency, followed by a sharp fall.
CW3’s launch also comes amid mounting regulatory pressure on Canadian crypto companies to become registered with the country’s securities regulators.
DeFi is not currently regulated in Canada. However, in 2021, the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) listed DeFi in its statement of priorities for the coming fiscal year, indicating that Web3 is currently on regulators’ radar.
CW3 is calling on all levels of Canadian government to establish “a coordinated approach to convene industry and experts to build a robust, equitable, and sustainable national strategy for cryptocurrency and digital assets.”
Feature image by André François McKenzie via Unsplash.