Malta is positioning itself to be a leader when it comes to Distributed Ledger Technology (‘DLT’) regulation by recognising and embracing these technologies as well as creating the right regulatory environment in Malta, which can serve to attract innovation and investment in this sector. Both central government as well as specific sectoral regulators (including the Malta Financial Services Authority and the Malta Gaming Authority) have, during 2018, issued a number of consultations as to how these Malta laws need to be fine-tuned in order to best embrace the DLT revolution as well as setting up specific sandboxing projects. The three pieces of legislation properly regulate the DLT field and the operators within the same, which pave the way for Malta to establish itself as the blockchain Island and a key player in the crypto arena. The legislations published on the 20th July 2018, and come into effect on the 1st November 2018, are the following:

  1. Virtual Financial Assets Act, 2018 – provides a regulatory framework pursuant to the issuance of Initial Virtual Financial Assets Offerings and Virtual Financial Assets, which are more commonly known as Initial Coin Offerings, and other ancillary services related to cryptocurrencies
  2. Innovative Technology Arrangements and Services Act, 2018 – provides for the regulation of innovative technology arrangements and innovative technology services as referred to in the First and Second Schedule to the Act.
  3. Malta Digital Innovation Technology Act, 2018 – provides for the establishment of the Maltese authority – the Malta Digital Innovation Authority – the main purpose of which, amongst others, is to support the development and implementation of technology innovation, including distributed and decentralised technology


The three Acts work together by providing a broad legal framework. Indeed, Malta has in fact seen an influx of interest and a number of key players have already setup or are in the process of setting up base in Malta.

The three laws are in force as from the 1st November 2018, however one may start operating prior to said date, since the Acts provide for a transitionary period.

Fenlex together with Fenech & Fenech Advocates, have together setup a FinTech Team which specialises in TMT, Financial Services and Tax law, covering all technological, regulatory, corporate and tax aspects relative to this new sector of business, whilst Fenlex, provides the full range of corporate services typically required by such clients. We believe that our firm’s FinTech Team is uniquely placed to service clients operating in the blockchain space, and this in view of the fact that it is a recognised leader in four key areas of law, and services of interest to this type of operation, namely:

Key Contact