The European Union’s lawmakers voted on Thursday, 517-38, in favor of the new crypto licensing regime Markets in Crypto-Assets, with 18 absences, making the European Union the first major jurisdiction in world to introduce comprehensive crypto laws.

The European Parliament also approved a separate law, known as the Transfer of Funds Regulation, that requires crypto operators identify their clients in an effort to stop money laundering. There were 14 abstentions.

The vote comes after a debate on Wednesday in which lawmakers supported plans that would require crypto wallet providers, exchanges and stablecoin issuers to maintain adequate reserves.

Mairead McGuinness, European Commission, described the vote in a Tweet as a “world-first” for crypto regulations.

McGuinness stated, “We are protecting consumers as well as financial stability and the integrity of the market.” The rules will be implemented from next year.

Stefan Berger, a lawmaker from the European Parliament who was in charge of negotiations for the law, stated that the new rules “put the EU at the forefront of the token-based economy.”

Berger stated that “the European crypto-assets industry has regulatory certainty, which is not present in countries such as the U.S.” “The sector which was damaged by FTX’s collapse can regain confidence.”

In a Tweet the European Securities and Markets Authority welcomed the vote and stated that it would “announce” in due course its schedule for drafting MiCA secondary legislation. The EU agency said that “ESMA continues to warn consumers that investing in cryptocurrency assets is a risky undertaking with limited protections at this time.”

Markets in Crypto Assets was first proposed in 2020 by the European Commission. To become law, it must be approved by both the EU Council and the EU parliament, which represents all member states. The main provisions of the regulation will begin to apply within 12 months following publication in the official journal of the EU, which is likely to be in June.

Read more: EU Crypto Licensing System Set to Approved as Lawmakers Signal Their Support

Update (20 April, 11:00 UTC): Adds tweet from Commissioner McGuinness.

Updated (April 20, 1123 UTC): Added quote from Stefan Berger.

Updated (April 20, 1306 UTC). Added quote from ESMA.

Sandali Handagama is the editor.