The UK’s treasury minister has tasked the Royal Mint with creating an NFT as “an brand of the forward-looking approach” Her Majesty’s Treasury says it’ll take toward cryptocurrencies and blockchains. The mission was announced in a speech by John Glen, the Economic Secretary to the Treasury, who said at a summit that extra details on the mint’s mint can be coming “very soon.”
While countries fancy Ukraine have issued NFTs earlier than, this particular announcement feels a bit assorted — for one, it’s coming from one of the best stages of the British govt. It’s also presupposed to be carried out by the entity in charge of printing the country’s money.
That’s no longer to say that UK electorate have to aloof interrogate the government to replace the pound with HerMajesty’sCoin anytime soon. The announcement’s total lack of details makes it easy to examine it as merely a PR exercise — a way for the treasury to remark that it really is serious about making the UK a hotbed of financial innovation and getting “in on the bottom ground” with crypto (by, you know, announcing an NFT over a year after Taco Bell came out with its bear crypto token).
To be fair, it appears fancy the UK govt is taking crypto seriously. Glen announced that the treasury is asking a legal task power to consider the “legal status of decentralized autonomous organizations” (or DAOs). He also rounds up a lot of what the government is currently working on regarding crypto — the talk is 21 minutes long (although there’s a accurate amount of fluff), and you can watch it in chunky below.
Reuters does a accurate job of breaking down the major components, but as a TL;DR: the UK’s treasury is working on regulating some stablecoins (cryptocurrencies whose value is, in concept, largely tied to the value of fiat currencies), will be having a lot of meetings around crypto regulation and is aloof working on its “regulatory sandbox” to let crypto companies “check merchandise and companies and products in a controlled environment.”
As for the treasury’s crypto mission, it’s hard to understand what to interrogate. Will it be a collectible that crypto enthusiasts across the UK will want to have of their wallets? Or will it merely be a single NFT (the announcement tweet somewhat implies that there’ll be only one) saved on a hardware wallet locked up in Buckingham Palace or the Tower of London?
Honestly, that’s probably no longer the important part. While NFTs are buzzy (or at least were at one point), crypto’s future is usually shaped extra by how countries with a mammoth stake in global finance retract to regulate them rather than any particular mission — even supposing that mission is from the Royal Mint.