UK Treasury has Dropped NFT Plans, Proposal is Under Review
- Andrew Griffith, the Economic Secretary of the UK Treasury, has told Parliament that the Royal Mint will not mint an NFT and will “keep this proposal under review.”
- Rishi Sunak, the UK’s Prime Minister, asked the Royal Mint to create the NFT in April 2022 as a part of the ministry’s “forward-looking approach” towards crypto.
- “We’ve been calling on the chancellor to drop this crypto gimmick for months,” said Tulip Siddiq, a British politician serving as the MP for Hampstead and Kilburn.
- Harriet Baldwin, chair of the UK Treasury Select Committee, believes that the speculative value of these digital assets could lead to constituents losing all their money.
The development of the crypto community in the United Kingdom was gradually picking up pace following the 2021 bull run of the crypto market. However, the collapse of multiple crypto companies, worsening economic conditions, and an increase in the number of scammers have slowed the development. The plans of the UK Treasury to release a non-fungible token (NFT) last year are close to being scrapped, and the Economic Secretary of His Majesty’s Treasury has told Parliament that the Royal Mint will “keep this proposal under review.”
It is crucial to note here that in mid-2022, the Royal Mint of the UK decided to issue a non-fungible token for sale despite the decline in the prices and popularity of these blockchain-based tokens around the globe. Further, Rishi Sunak, the UK’s Prime Minister and former Chancellor of the Exchequer, asked the Royal Mint to create the NFT in April 2022.
According to a report from Reuters, the decision taken by Sunak was a part of the ministry’s “forward-looking approach” towards crypto. Interestingly, Andrew Griffith, Economic Secretary of the UK Treasury, revealed to the Parliament that Royal Mint, the official maker of British coins, would not create the NFT, and now, the proposal from Sunak is under review.
“In consultation with HM Treasury, the Royal Mint is not proceeding with the launch of a non-fungible token at this time but will keep this proposal under review,” Griffith said.
The statement from Griffith above was a response to a question by Chair of the Treasury Select Committee Harriet Baldwin, who talked about NFTs being a part of Sunak’s policy.
Additionally, Tulip Siddiq, a British politician serving as the Member of Parliament for Hampstead and Kilburn since 2015, welcomed this decision from the Royal Mint, stating,
“I’m glad that the Royal Mint has finally made the Conservatives see sense, but we’ve been calling on the chancellor to drop this crypto gimmick for months.”
Siddiq added that “this out-of-touch government should be focused on the cost of living crisis, not wasting time and taxpayers’ money on an NFT vanity project and promoting dodgy stablecoins.”
On the other hand, the UK Treasury recently stated that it wanted to make Britain “a global hub for crypto-asset technology.” The goal was to create a suitable regulatory environment for crypto firms to “invest, innovate, and scale up, while maintaining financial stability and regulatory standards to ensure people can use new technologies reliably and safely,” said the UK Treasury last year.
As per a report from the BBC, Baldwin believes that the speculative value of these digital assets (NFTs) could lead to constituents losing all their money.
“We have not yet seen a lot of evidence that our constituents should be putting their money in these speculative tokens unless they are prepared to lose all their money. So perhaps that is why the Royal Mint has made this decision in conjunction with the Treasury.”
According to an earlier report from BitcoinWisdom, the UK Treasury initiated an investigation into the pros and cons of crypto and the inquiry covered the potential impact of distributed ledger technology (DLT) on financial infrastructure and financial institutions like the Central Bank.