New York City Mayor Eric Adams has hit out at his state’s BitLicensing regime, claiming that it stifles innovation and economic growth.

In a closing keynote interview at the Crypto and Digital Assets Summit in London on Wednesday, Adams suggested his state legislature counterparts in Albany “listen to those who are in the industry” adding:

“It’s about thinking not only outside the box, but on this one, we may have to destroy the box.”

Adams is a crypto advocate who ran for mayor, planning to turn New York City into the “center of the cryptocurrency industry,” and took his first three paychecks in Bitcoin (BTC). In the interview, he said cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology are the “next chapters in the future,” and the opportunity shouldn’t be squandered.

“New York State is the only state to require a license for crypto companies. That’s a high barrier, and it just makes us less competitive. We have to continue to be competitive.”

Since 2015, any “virtual currency business” wishing to offer services within New York requires a BitLicense to do so. According to the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS), the license ensures that its residents have a “well-regulated way to access the virtual currency marketplace” and that the state remains at the “center of technological innovation and forward-looking regulation.”

Many crypto firms moved from New York when the license was introduced, and a recent call to remove regulatory barriers and ease restrictions focuses on the license, which costs $5,000 in application fees…

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