UK Treasury disclosures for first quarter reveal meetings with top crypto execs

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  • Public disclosures show that top Treasury officials took a number of meetings with crypto and venture capital firms in the first quarter. 

UK Treasury disclosures for the first quarter of 2022 reveal a number of meetings between top officials and crypto companies. 

The HMT Ministers' Meetings log, published on the UK government website, shows that then economic secretary John Glen had meetings in February and March with crypto firms including Binance, Paxos, Coinbase and Circle, with the intention to "discuss cryptoassets."

He also met with venture capital firms a16z and Kingsway Capital, as well as point of sale software provider Epos Now, for the same purpose. 

Professor Barry Eichengreen, a University of California academic who has expressed skepticism toward the future of crypto in the financial ecosystem, met with Glen in January. 

Meanwhile, Rishi Sunak, the former chancellor who is currently running to be leader of the Conservative Party, met with Sequoia managing partner Douglas Leone to "discuss the UK’s Venture Capital sector."

Previous disclosures show that at the end of last year, Sunak visited California and met with representatives from Sequoia and a16z, as well as attending a roundtable with companies including Bitwise, Celo, Solana and Iqoniq. 

Should Sunak win the leadership contest, he would become the UK's next prime minister. 

The meetings preceded the Treasury's announcement in April that it planned to regulate stablecoins and issue its own NFT via the Royal Mint. The policy announcement was part of a bid to position the UK as a crypto-friendly tech hub.

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