The Zimbabwean government has recently opened up its plan to spread the definition of securities to encompass virtual asset service providers (VASPs).

In a document released by the government, the proposed plan to include VASPs in the stated security category will be enabled through amending of the country’s Securities and Exchange Act.

A local report stated that the proposed law will enable the country’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SECZ) to create regulations that will supervise the VASPs.

The report also stated that Zimbabwe’s anti-money laundering law will undergo an amendment to allow Zimbabwean authorities to deal with any appearance of abuse on crypto assets y certain members of the country.

The Zimbabwean government explains that:

“The Money Laundering and Proceeds of Crime Act will be amended to in order to provide for identification and assessment of money laundering and terrorist financing risks that may arise in relation to Virtual assets, acts and activities.

In addition, Zimbabwe — which itself is under U.S. financial sanctions — says the same law will be amended to “ensure sanctions are also applicable to VASPs, their directors and senior management.”

Following this proposal, Prosper Mwedzi a major stakeholder for crypto regulation while reacting to the government’s amendment commends the plan, stating that it wasn’t out of place.

However, he expressed his concerns as the plan appears to lack clear timeframes:

“The amendment looks like a step in the right direction for the country as it is the first time that digital assets are expressly mentioned under Zimbabwean law. When effective, it will designate SECZ as the official regulatory body to have oversight of crypto for AML purposes and will pave way for policy development in this space. The main question is how long will this process take.”

Other prominent and key stakeholders in the Zimbabwean crypto ecosystem have suggested that the government’s plan could be a part of a bigger objective in trying to align the country’s law with the FATF guidelines.

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