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Circle lands e-money license. Will mint USDC, EURC MiCA compliant stablecoins in EU

circle mica usdc eurc

Stablecoin issuer Circle has been granted an Electronic Money Institution (EMI) license by France’s Autorité de Contrôle Prudentiel et de Résolution (ACPR), part of the Banque de France. With Europe’s MiCA laws relating to stablecoins coming into force yesterday, Circle is now the first global stablecoin issuer to be compliant. Other smaller stablecoins issuers already have licenses. Hence, it now plans to issue both the EURC and USDC via Circle Mint France.

“Since our founding, Circle has sought to build durable, compliant, and well-regulated infrastructure for stablecoins, and our adherence to MiCA, which represents one of the most comprehensive crypto regulatory regimes in the world, is a huge milestone in bringing digital currency into mainstream scale and acceptance,” said Jeremy Allaire, Co-Founder and CEO at Circle.

“By working closely with French and EU regulators, we are now able to offer both USDC and EURC as fully-compliant dollar and euro stablecoins to the European market.”

Would this mean that USDC in Europe is no longer fungible with the coin elsewhere? Circle’s Patrick Hansen said they are fungible. “EURC will be fully issued by Circle France, with all reserves held by Circle France in compliance with MiCA standards,” he said. In contrast, USDC will simply be minted by Circle France.

That’s a critical point because the EU requires large issuers to hold 60% of their reserves in bank accounts, which will pay far less interest than Treasuries. This is a topic that Patrick Hansen previously pushed back on.

Additionally, MiCA imposes limits on the transaction volumes for non-EU currency stablecoins to protect monetary sovereignty. A dollar stablecoin can’t average more than €200 million in daily volume or more than a million transactions. However, most crypto and general investment transactions are not included in the limit, which instead targets everyday payments to merchants. We’ll be publishing a detailed article on that topic tomorrow.