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Last year, the Dutch House of Representatives passed the Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive (AMLD5). In accordance with this directive, some crypto service providers in the Netherlands are required to comply with their anti-money laundering (“Wwft”) obligations.

In this blog post, we will look at the regulatory oversight of some crypto service providers in relation to these commitments. If you plan to register a company for crypto services in the Netherlands, then you may find this blog post useful for yourself.

The new rules apply to the following crypto providers:

  • companies offering custodial wallets;
  • companies offering services for the exchange of virtual currencies and fiduciary currencies.

You will need to register a crypto company with DNB in ​​the Netherlands in order to legally offer services. If you have any questions about how to register a crypto business in the Netherlands, please contact us.

You must comply with the new rules if you wish to offer exchange services or depository wallets to/from the Netherlands and:

  • live or have a Dutch office;
  • offer services from another EU country;
  • Dutch providers of only international services.

If you intend to start a company for a crypto business in the Netherlands or you are not quite familiar with how to obtain a license for a crypto business in the Netherlands, contact us to order advice on registering a crypto company in the Netherlands.

Sanctions for non-compliance

The anonymous nature of digital currencies creates a field for criminal abuse. Therefore, the regulator may deregister if the cryptoasset service provider does not meet the requirements of Wwft or the Sanctions Act. Everyone in the country is required to strictly comply with the sanctions rules in force.

If you would like to establish a Dutch crypto exchange, then it is worth considering that some regulated institutions are subject to additional obligations under the Sanctions Act:

  • taking action on administrative organization and internal control;
  • preserving the accounts of the respective contacts in notifications and transactions with them until five years after the imposition of the sanctions, when the individual or entity concerned is no longer active or working.

A cryptoasset service provider has to freeze the financial resources of a contact, or prevent the provision of financial resources or services to that contact in the event of a “hit”. 

Failure to comply with these obligations can lead not only to the cancellation of the company's registration, as a result of which the activity should be terminated, but also to significant administrative fines. Violation of the rules can also lead to criminal prosecution. Therefore, if you intend to become a crypto services provider in the Netherlands, you must remember to comply with the rules on sanctions. 

If you still have questions about the regulation of crypto activities in the Netherlands, please contact us to order a consultation from our experienced specialists on a crypto business registration in the Netherlands.