Up to date: cryptocurrency regulation in Estonia (2021)

This blog post introduces the requirements for companies applying for an Estonian cryptocurrency license in 2021.

This post was firstly published on our website.

Nothing attracts an entrepreneur more than the speed and cost of launching a cryptocurrency project. There is no doubt, in Estonia, such projects can be implemented faster and cheaper than anywhere else. Only one cryptocurrency license is required to legalise any crypto-activity in Estonia. This strengthens its position among the most preferred jurisdictions to launch a crypto-project.

A Member of the company’s Board can apply for a cryptocurrency license in Estonia. An application for a license can be submitted electronically with an e-resident card when visiting a notary in Tallinn or by issuing a power of attorney to a representative of the Company in Estonia OÜ so that our lawyer can submit the application for you.

The state fee for an application for a license is 3,300 EUR. The fee must be paid to the Estonian Ministry of Finance (FIU). The issue of a license is decided by the Rahapesu andmebüroo (RAB) within 60 working days after the application is submitted.

About the requirements

In connection with the Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Prevention Act, amendments have been made to establish stricter boundaries for companies applying for an Estonian cryptocurrency license.

  • The minimum share capital of a crypto-company is 12,000 EUR, and its deposit before applying for a crypto-license is mandatory. This amount can be further used to finance the commercial activities of the company.

Payment of the share capital is made through a cash contribution — by bank transfer from the personal account of the Owner/s of the company in shares corresponding to the share’s par value. You can deposit the share capital for a cryptocurrency company only with a cash contribution (not cryptocurrency) from the personal account of the Owner/s to the corporate account. The Members of the Board of Directors pay a contribution equal to their share’s par value (i.e. corresponding to their share in the share capital).

  • The state fee payable to the Estonian government is 3,300 EUR.
  • A corporate IBAN account is required before applying. Estonian banks do not accept applications for opening a bank account from crypto+companies; however, it is possible to open an account with one of the European Providers of Cross-Border e-Money Services registered in Estonia.
  • The Management Board and the place of business must be located in Estonia.
  • The company applying for the license must have a legal address in Estonia. The Regulator can visit the physical office at any time to check the documentation and confirm the firm’s activities. The physical office of a crypto-company must be located in Estonia and correspond to the company’s activities.
  • The presence of the Director (an Estonian citizen) of the company is mandatory. The Director of the company must be a resident of Estonia and reside in Estonia.
  • When applying for a single cryptocurrency license, a local KYC/AML Officer is required for an Estonian company. After applying for a crypto-license, the KYC/AML Officer will have to undergo an interview with the RAB to confirm their skills and suitability for the position.

Company in Estonia OÜ can help you find and hire an Estonian Director for your company and train them in client identification requirements under the Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Prevention Act. We should note that the chosen Director will only be a member of your company and represent it in communication with the Regulator.

Please request a consultation from us here:

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