In a move to establish the United Kingdom as a global hub for cryptocurrencies, the government has introduced a tax exemption for foreign investors purchasing digital assets through local investment managers or brokers. The exemption, which took effect on January 1, 2023, is aimed at attracting global investors and ensuring that foreign investors are not subject to UK tax solely by appointing UK-based investment managers.
The exemption applies to all crypto assets, including decentralized finance (DeFi) assets, and is part of the UK’s efforts to position itself as a leading investment management hub. In July 2021, the HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) issued a consultation seeking the views of investors and professionals on the taxation of DeFi in the UK. The HMRC also has a tax guide in place for resident cryptocurrency traders.
The Bank of England (BoE) has also recently weighed in on the issue of cryptocurrency regulation, stating that the industry is “too dangerous” to remain unregulated and could pose “a systemic problem” if action is not taken. The BoE’s deputy governor suggested that the central bank may soon regulate the industry in order to protect investors and the wider financial system from the risks associated with crypto trading. The BoE believes that retail investors should be able to speculate on crypto in a safe manner, similar to traditional markets.