Dr Leonard Bonello – Partner at GANADO Advocates

Amongst many law firms in Malta, GANADO is perhaps one of the most recognised and established names within the industry. One of their most recent accomplishments was shaping the national blockchain regulations along the Maltese Government.

We invited one of the GANADO’s partners – Dr Leonard Bonello – who specialises in the Financial Law and constitutes the board of Malta Blockchain Association.

As one of the most experienced lawyers in Banking Regulations, e-Money and Financial Markets Regulation, Leonard carries a unique experience within an industry that will be the most affected by blockchain technology and its product – virtual currency.

However, despite Leonard’s extensive experience in assisting blockchain-based projects, he admits that one of the most significant challenges of creating regulations around blockchain is establishing something that can quickly change within a day.

Lawyers Will Have To Reinvent Themselves

Leonard’s view on the blockchain and its application is much closer to the real-life scenario than the majority of professionals who are willing to speak about the new technology openly. Unlike some, he acknowledges the very early stage of blockchain and the big question mark of its impact in the future and what shape will it take.

To demystify one of the false perceptions of the blockchain, we spoke about the promises the technology has given to us – one of them is the elimination of a middleman and increased levels of trust. The first profession that was doomed to disappear and be replaced by blockchain was lawyers.

However, as rightly pointed out by Leonard, this scenario is unlikely to happen – it’s correct lawyers will have to reinvent themselves and learn new skills, such as coding, but blockchain won’t be able to replace them entirely. The lawyers of tomorrow have to be prepared to learn new skills and be flexible regarding changes the technology will bring the long-established profession.

When asked about Malta’s new jurisdiction niche, Leonard was not only optimistic but also understandable of the reasons behind creating the buzz around the #BlockchainIsland:

“Malta created right buzz and hype around jurisdiction. (…) There are multiple avenues and possible markets that can be developed on the island. The future is bright for the island.”

The next focus for the island will be readjusting the laws to the ever-changing blockchain landscape as well as education. With GANADO being a pioneer in the new jurisdiction, we are sure that the company will play a prominent role in shaping that future.

More about GANADO Advocates

GANADO Advocates is a leading commercial law firm with a particular focus on the corporate, financial services and maritime sectors, predominantly servicing international clients doing business in or out of Malta. The firm traces its roots back to the early 1900s, and is today one of Malta’s foremost law practices, consistently ranking as a leading firm in all its core sectors. GANADO Advocates has over the past decades contributed directly towards creating and enhancing Malta’s hard-won reputation as a reliable and effective international centre for financial and maritime services. GANADO Advocates has a thriving FinTech practice covering all aspects of financial services including assisting payment and electronic money institutions, helping investment firms with use of robo advisory and assisting crowdfunding platforms. The FinTech team is now at the forefront of the crypto revolution taking place on the island. GANADO’s Fintech team is often helping issuers and service providers in the crypto space.