Ripple has expressed dissatisfaction over the regulatory uncertainty surrounding cryptocurrencies in the United States. Apart from this, the San Francisco-based firm has also decided to act. By moving out of its home turf. But where will Ripple move next? Here are the relocation options.
Ripple’s Asia Options: Japan, Singapore & the United Arab Emirates
When Ripple’s co-founder and Executive Chairman Chris Larsen threatened to move out of the United States over the federal government’s anachronistic attitude towards cryptocurrency regulation, the message was clear.
During a virtual interview with Fortune at the LA Blockchain Summit, Larsen dropped the ‘relocation bomb.’ The Ripple co-founder also added that the US is far behind in the cryptocurrency regulation game compared to its counterparts. To the point that it actually risks losing its financial innovation edge to China (in particular).
Continuing his commentary, Larsen said that the U.K. and Singapore are the most probable destinations for the company to relocate if it moves base out of the country.
However, yesterday, in an interview with Bloomberg, Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse added Japan and the United Arab Emirates too to the list of Asia options. Elucidating the reason for extending the list, he said:
The common denominator between all of them is that their governments have created a clarity about how they would regulate different digital assets, different cryptocurrencies.
He reiterated Chirs Larsen’s stance about the United States’ uncertain regulatory roadmap. He also referred specifically to the conundrum of categorizing cryptocurrencies into a commodity, a currency, a property, or security.
Moving out of the US is more of a compulsion than a desire, Mr. Garlinghouse explained. Ripple would have continued to operate from their home turf if the cryptocurrency regulation scenario was not colloidal.
Ripple is definitely a proud US company and we’d like to stay in the US if that was possible, but we also need regulatory clarity in order for us to invest and grow the business.
Love For London And The United Kingdom
Apart from Asia, Ripple is also strongly considering the UK as an option. This became clear when in an interview with CNBC, the CEO applauded the clarity regarding XRP’s regulatory status in the country.
“What you see in the U.K. is a clear taxonomy, and the U.K.’s FCA took a leadership role in characterizing how we should think about these different assets and their use cases,” Garlinghouse said.
The outcome of that was clarity that XRP is not a security and is used as a currency. With that clarity, it would be advantageous for Ripple to operate in the U.K.”
This is clearly where the US is failing, Mr. Garlinghouse remarked. Although the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is clear on Bitcoin and Ethereum not being securities, when it comes to XRP, the authority has mostly stayed mum, which in turn has left the cryptocurrency’s status ‘shrouded in uncertainty.’
The clarification regarding XRP’s ‘security status’ is crucial for Ripple. Even though the company claims total disassociation from the XRP ledger and the token, it still owns 55 billion of the total 100 billion XRP supply.
Apart from the United Kingdom and the aforementioned countries in the Asian continent, Ripple has also shown interest in Switzerland for setting up its headquarters.
Ripple (XRP) price climbed up higher but not necessarily in response to Ripple’s decision to leave the US. The rally can be mostly attributed to bitcoin rushing for the stars with its explosive break past the $13,000 mark.
Will the cryptocurrency-based fintech firm be able to operate with total and unequivocal regulatory clarity in the above countries? It still remains to be seen.