South Korea confirms it will not ban cryptocurrencies

31 Jan 18

South Korea has no plans to ban cryptocurrency trading, the finance minister confirmed last week, following speculation it could follow China’s example and block all virtual coin platforms.

This comes after it was reported earlier this month that the country’s Ministry of Justice wanted to block all cryptocurrency trading amid concerns about tax evasion and crime.

Finance minister Kim Dong-yeon was questioned about the government’s plans to regulate the virtual market and said “there is no intention to pan or suppress” the market. Instead, the government’s priority is to regulate the exchange, he said.

The justice minister Park Sang-ki said at a conference earlier this month: “There are great concerns regarding virtual currencies and the justice ministry is basically preparing a bill to ban cryptocurrency trading through exchanges.”

South Korean financial authorities have previously said they are inspecting six local banks that offer virtual currency accounts to institutions, amid concerns the increasing use of such assets could lead to a surge in crime.

China launched a crack-down on cryptocurrencies in September 2017 with its authorities banning bitcoin trading and initial coin offerings. 

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