Matt Hancock on crypto: ‘You may lose everything, but you may not, right?’

Matt Hancock

Former Health Secretary Matt Hancock has said it is his “mission” to support the development of crypto and cryptoassets in the UK.

In an interview with City A.M. the former cabinet minister reaffirmed his position as a proponent of the cryptosasset industry, saying his goal is to make the UK “embrace” blockchain technology.

“My mission in this, if you like, is to make the UK love crypto,” said the Conservative MP.

Hancock’s comments come after UK Chancellor Rishi Sunak said his goal is to transform the UK into a global digital asset hub.

Despite the support crypto is receiving from UK political figures, financial regulators in the country have been less keen to ramp up Britain’s embrace of the technology.

Financial Conduct Authority head Nikhil Rathi last month warned of the risk that cryptocurrencies pose for both regulators and consumers, saying “if you invest in crypto, you need to be prepared to lose all your money”.

The financial watchdog has also ramped up its attempts to regulate cryptocurrency firms operating in the UK. Recently, it set a now passed deadline that forced unregistered crypto companies out of the UK market.

However, Hancock believes that while regulation is important, it shouldn’t hamper the UK’s crypto industry.

“If we can love crypto, we can embrace it. We can get a good strong regulatory system – a liberal regulatory system – that nevertheless has the rules there that are appropriate to the modern use of technology,” Hancock said.

Hancock also appeared to be unconcerned by Rathi’s warning about losing money from crypto investments. Hancock said: “It’s right to say you may lose everything, but you may not, right?”

Despite Hancock’s bullish approach, he has said he does not personally invest in cryptoassets.

The Conservative MP has become an outspoken advocate for the UK crypto market since leaving the cabinet after breaching the government’s Covid-19 safety restrictions.