In a recent parliamentary report, the Canadian House of Commons Standing Committee on Industry and Technology has called for the recognition and strategic development of the blockchain industry in Canada. The report highlights the country's impressive track record in blockchain innovation but emphasises the need for further efforts to support and encourage its growth.
The comprehensive report, which followed a series of meetings with industry experts and stakeholders, outlines the diverse applications of blockchain technology. These applications range from cryptos and supply chain management to public sector uses and non-crypto financial innovations.
Witnesses testifying before the committee praised Canada for its notable contributions to blockchain innovation and entrepreneurial capacity. However, the report reveals that while 2.5% of large enterprises in Canada were utilising blockchain technology in 2021, the adoption rate among small- and medium-sized enterprises remained below 1%. To underline the industry's potential, it is estimated that approximately 16,000 Canadians were employed in the blockchain sector in 2020, with crypto firms alone employing around 13,000 Canadians by 2022.
Regarding crypto trading platforms, the report emphasises that Canadian platforms are adequately regulated to protect consumers from the risks associated with foreign platforms. It cites the infamous collapse of the Canadian QuadrigaCX trading platform in 2019 as a catalyst for regulatory action and acknowledges the alignment of Canadian regulators with global trends.
In light of its findings, the report puts forth a series of recommendations aimed at advancing the blockchain industry in Canada. It calls for official recognition of the role of blockchain and the formulation of a national strategy in collaboration with industry participants.
The report also stresses the importance of regulatory clarity, particularly in areas such as stablecoin regulation. Notably, the committee notes that witnesses themselves held differing opinions on whether stablecoins should be classified as securities.
The report highlights the urgent need for Canada to establish a supportive framework that fosters blockchain innovation, protects consumers, and ensures responsible growth. By embracing the recommendations outlined in the report, Canada can position itself as a leading global player in the blockchain industry, driving economic growth and reaping the benefits of this transformative technology.
The writer is the founder at yMedia. He ventured into crypto in 2013 and is an ETH maximalist. Twitter: @bhardwajshash