South Korea’s Crypto Sector Perks Up on Regulatory News

South Korea's cryptocurrency industry welcomes the latest government's announcement on the pursuit of cooperation.

South Korea’s digital currency sector is cheering the latest announcement by local regulators that they will ditch plans for stringent rules and opt instead for cooperation with the industry, thus paving the way for “normalization” in the cryptocurrency environment.

Kim Haw-joon of the Korea Blockchain Association stated:

“Though the government and the industry have not yet reached a full agreement, the fact that the regulator himself made clear the government’s stance on cooperation is a positive sign for the markets.”

This enthusiasm comes after the head of Korea’s Finance Supervisory Service (FSS), Choe Heung-sik, announced a shift in government policy away from the earlier tough stance on cryptocurrency trading. The previous negative sentiment was partly blamed for the most recent market correction.

Choe stated on Tuesday:

“The whole world is now framing the outline [for cryptocurrency] and therefore [the government] should rather work more on normalization than increasing regulation.”

The announcement was quickly cheered by the industry, with Bitcoin hitting a three-week high of $11,086 on Biststamp after dropping to a low of $5,920 early this month.

South Korea to launch crypto exchange approval system

Prior to the FSS announcement, there had been signs that Seoul was softening its hardline attitude to virtual currency trading.

Last week, a government official on a cryptocurrency task force revealed that the country was studying the feasibility of implementing a new crypto exchange approval system mirroring the BitLicense model employed by New York State financial regulators.

The anonymous official was quoted as saying:

“We are positively considering the adoption of an exchange approval system as the additional regulation on cryptocurrencies. We are most likely [to] benchmark the model of the State of New York that gives a selective permission.”

Cryptocurrency regulator official found dead

However, this week was not all about good crypto news from South Korea. Jung Ki-joon, head of the Economic Policy Coordination Office, was found dead on Sunday in his home, apparently after suffering a heart attack while sleeping.

Before his death, Jung was responsible for crafting new regulations, specifically with regard to banning anonymous digital currency accounts and preventing banks from providing settlements for unidentified cryptocurrency trades on exchanges.

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