How to obtain a cryptocurrency license in Norway

Regulation of the cryptocurrency market is constantly becoming stricter. Nowadays jurisdictions impose high regulatory and risk management requirements on virtual asset service providers.

Despite this, we always manage to find a solution that suits the client. All the time our team provides research of the market and regulations on various markets to find the best jurisdiction. Not so long ago we have made the global overview of the VASP regulation in EEA and ready to share information with our future and existing clients. Today we will look at the features of obtaining a cryptocurrency license in Norway.

Tax Summary:

  1. Personal income tax – 22%
  2. Corporate income tax – 22% 

What law/s governs VASP activities?

  1. Lov om tiltak mot hvitvasking og terrorfinansiering (“AML act“)

What activities are included in VASP services?

In accordance with clause 5 of Article 4 of the AML Act, VASP services include:

  1. Virtual currency exchange services (for other virtual currency or fiat funds).
  2. Custodial storage of virtual currency.

Who is the VASP regulator?

  1. Norges Bank
  2. The Financial Supervisory Authority of Norway (“FSAN“)

What is the procedure for registering a VASP for a local company?

To become a VASP in Norway, you must fulfill the following conditions:

  1. Establish a local company (including registration in the Commercial Register of Companies).
  2. Have a local registered office.
  3. Apply for registration in the crypto company register maintained by FSAN. The application can be submitted through the Altinn platform or by email. The application must include the following: applicant’s name; form of organization and company number; indicate the type of service offered; business address; name, residential address, and date of birth or number of: the CEO or persons holding a similar position, board members or persons holding a similar position, any other contact persons.
  4. The following documents must be attached to the application: AML documentation, including a risk assessment; a presentation on the mechanisms of the platform and the provision of virtual asset services, a certificate of criminal record for the CEO, board members, and other persons actually managing the company, see the following.

Is there any specific authorization required for a VASP from another EU member state to provide services in this jurisdiction?

According to the AML Act, if a person provides services from Norway or targets the Norwegian market, he must be duly authorized. In addition, the local regulator FSAN has repeatedly accused various crypto exchanges, including Binance, of unauthorized trading.

A VASP from another EU member can only provide services in Norway after being authorized by FSAN. Such a VASP must have a branch office. The rest of the procedure is the same as for the registration of a local one.

What is the liability for the activities of a VASP from another EU member state without local registration/authorization in this jurisdiction?

Conducting business without registering with FSAN may be punishable by a fine (as individually assessed by FSAN) or imprisonment of up to 1 year for senior managers under section 51 of the AML Act.

Manimama Legal & Growth Agency provides a gateway for the companies operating as the virtual asset wallet and exchange providers allowing to enter to the markets legally. We are ready to offer an appropriate support in obtaining a license with lower founding and operating costs. We offer KYC/AML launch, support in risk assessment, legal services, legal opinions, advice on general data protection provisions, contracts and all necessary legal and business tools to start business of virtual asset service provider.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter, not to be considered as a legal consultation.