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South Korea

South Korean lawmakers are urged to pass the country’s first cryptocurrency bill as soon as possible, as financial regulators warn about the ever-increasing risk of crypto thefts.

Hong Seong-ki, the head financial analysts at the Financial Services Commission (FSC), was adamant to point out the importance of the said bill in an interview for Bloomberg.

“While crypto markets have seen rapid growth, such trading platforms don’t seem to be well-enough prepared in terms of security. We’re trying to legislate the most urgent and important things first, aiming for money-laundering prevention and investor protection. The bill should be passed as soon as possible”, Seong-ki declared.

This warning comes in the light of the two attacks on crypto exchanges that took place last month. In the attacks, Bithumb and Coinrail lost around $71 million combined ($31 million for Bithumb, and $40 million for Coinrail).

Various effects of the bill

If the bill were to be passed in its current form, then it would automatically put all crypto-exchanges in South Korea under the Financial Services Commission’s supervision. Hong was also keen to point that the FSC oversight of the crypto exchanges won’t represent an official endorsement of crypto trading. When asked what his general opinion on crypto investing is, Hong said: “I wouldn’t recommend putting money in cryptocurrencies.”

After stressing the importance of the bill, Hong also said that the institution would focus on policing the exchanges in question and not actively promoting their growth.

All in all, South Korean seems to be taking cryptocurrency quite seriously, which is not a bad thing. South Korean made headlines in September last year when it officially banned ICOs, one of the most efficient methods of investing money in crypto. There are some that hope that this cryptocurrency bill will pave the way to new ICO-related rules, and possibly even have the ban lifted as a consequence.

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