President Joe Biden would sign an executive order establishing the first-ever federal cryptocurrency strategy on Wednesday, the White House said.
Biden will oversee the investigation of a digital currency run by the U.S. central bank. He has urged authorities to uncover and manage digital assets’ risks to the financial system and the broader economy.
“The E.O. will help position the U.S. to keep playing a leading role in the innovation and governance of the digital assets ecosystem at home and abroad, in a way that protects consumers, is consistent with our democratic values and advances U.S. global competitiveness,” National Economic Council director Brian Deese and national security adviser Jake Sullivan said in a statement.
Its goal, according to Deese and Sullivan, is to “(encourage) innovation but (mitigate) the risks to consumers, investors, and businesses, broader financial stability, and the environment.”
The executive order issued by Biden focuses on six priorities: “consumer and investor protection; financial stability; illicit finance; U.S. leadership in the global financial system and economic competitiveness; financial inclusion; and responsible innovation.”
It urges the Treasury Department to assess and develop policy recommendations, and it encourages regulators to ensure control and supervision; it directs the Financial Stability Oversight Council to identify risks and develop policy recommendations on regulatory gaps, and it calls for a focus on coordinated action across federal agencies to mitigate illicit finance and national security risks.
According to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, the presidential directive would aid the government in making markets more equitable and transparent.
“This approach will support responsible innovation that could result in substantial benefits for the nation, consumers, and businesses,” Yellen said in a statement.
“It will also address risks related to illicit finance, protecting consumers and investors, and preventing threats to the financial system and broader economy.”
The directive will also require the Department of Commerce to construct a strategy to enhance US competitiveness and leadership in cryptocurrencies, as well as to assist responsible cryptosystem development, design, and implementation, along with many other things.
Moreover, the executive order directs the federal government to “explore a US Central Bank Digital Currency by placing urgency on research and development of a potential United States CBDC, should issuance be deemed in the national interest.”