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The largest free economic zone in the UAE, with zero percent personal and corporate income tax, has started issuing licenses to firms trading cryptocurrencies. The first license has been issued to a gold trader that has recently started offering cryptocurrency services.
Attracting Crypto Businesses
The Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC) is a government entity established in 2002 to enhance commodity trade flows through Dubai. DMCC Free Zone is the largest and fastest growing free economic zone in the UAE.
“We perform a range of roles which continue to position Dubai as the preferred destination for global commodities trade and DMCC as the world’s No.1 Free Zone,” offering zero percent personal and corporate income tax, the center’s website states. Today, more than 14,100 multinational corporations and startups call DMCC home, with almost 90,000 people living and working there.
The Centre has started issuing licenses to allow firms trading in cryptocurrencies to operate from its free zone, Thomson Reuters Zawya reported on Monday.
DMCC’s executive director for commodities, Sanjeev Dutta, told the publication that the Centre is “beginning to facilitate” a market in cryptocurrencies which, he acknowledged, is unregulated. Citing that firms looking to set up in the zone would be considered on a “case-by-case” basis, he elaborated:
To me, what is important is the fact that you are still evaluating it as part of your innovation strategy. You are not saying ‘no’ to something. You are not saying ‘yes’ either, but you are exploring, so you are clearly ahead of the others when the time to make a decision comes.
Cryptocurrencies as Commodities
DMCC is a member of the Global Blockchain Council, which began as a Dubai Smart City project and has 46 member organizations globally today. The Centre’s director of innovation hub, Franco Bosoni, said that a global consensus is emerging which favors classifying cryptocurrencies as commodities, the news outlet detailed and quoted him explaining:
DMCC’s view is that these [cryptocurrencies] meet the test of a commodity. They’re priced based on supply and demand, produced and sold globally at a uniform quality and (are) indistinguishable between products.
Wai Lum Kwok, head of capital markets for Abu Dhabi Global Markets Regulatory Authority, told the publication on Sunday that the regulator is “reviewing and considering the development of a robust, risk-appropriate regulatory framework” for crypto exchanges and intermediaries. Emphasizing that no timeframe has been set, he added:
As we develop our framework, we will also want to check in and have the conversations with, for example, US regulators, Japanese regulators and so on and so forth, so that there is some alignment of approach to avoid any regulatory arbitrage.
First License Issued
The first license for the Free Zone reportedly went to Regal Assets, a gold trader and storage provider with offices in the US, Canada, and the UAE. The company added cryptocurrencies to its product line at the end of last year, offering brokerage services and an insured, high-security cold storage service for bitcoin, ether, bitcoin cash, ethereum classic, ripple, and dash.
According to Bloomberg, “Dubai gold trader Regal RA DMCC is the first company in the Middle East to get a license to trade cryptocurrencies.” The news outlet quoted DMCC acknowledging in a statement, “The company will offer storage of bitcoin, ethereum and other cryptocurrencies in a vault located in DMCC headquarters in Almas Tower in Dubai.”
DMCC Executive Chairman Ahmed Bin Sulayem was quoted by the publication, “At the heart of DMCC’s long-term strategic growth plan is the use of technology and innovation to disrupt and connect new markets, industries and customers,” adding that “the announcement today embodies this approach.”
Do you think more crypto companies will move to this free economic zone? Let us know in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock and DMCC.
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India’s Income Tax Department recently announced that it has issued notices to 100,000 cryptocurrency investors. The announcement came in light of government surveys into the operations of multiple leading Indian exchanges that have revealed widespread tax evasion on the part of India’s cryptocurrency traders.
Indian Cryptocurrency Investors Accused of Tax Evasion
India’s Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) chairman, Mr. Sushil Chanda, recently told reports that the country’s Income Tax Department has issued approximately 100,000 notices to cryptocurrency investors.
“People who have made investments [in cryptocurrency] and have not declared income while filing taxes and have not paid tax on the profit earned by investing, we are sending them notices as we feel that it is all taxable,” said Mr. Chanda, whilst speaking at an ASSOCHAM event in New Delhi.
The chairman stated that the Income Tax Department had conducted numerous surveys into the operations of the country’s cryptocurrency exchanges in order to ascertain the scale of the tax evasion being conducted.
“We found out that there is no clarity on investments made by many people which means that they have not declared it properly,” said Mr. Chandra, adding “We have informed all the DGs (Director Generals of Income Tax) across India, they are issuing notices and so that would be taxed.”
India to Crack Down on Use of Cryptocurrencies as “Payment System”
The announcement comes shortly after S.C. Garg, India’s Economic Affairs Secretary, made comments discussing the country’s regulatory path with regard to cryptocurrencies. Speaking to CNBC, Garg stated that the government panel tasked with analyzing issues pertinent to “crypto assets” is expected to deliver its report by the end of the fiscal years, which ends on March 31st.
Reaffirming finance minister Arun Jaitley’s comments from last week, Garg also emphasized the government’s intention to crack down on the use of cryptocurrency as a means of payment, stating that “The government will take steps to make it illegal as a payment system.”
Do you think India will be successful in its efforts to reduce the use of cryptocurrency as a means of payment? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!
Images courtesy of Shutterstock, www.incometaxindia.gov.in
Need to calculate your bitcoin holdings? Check our tools section.
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Days before the Carnival on the islands of Trinidad and Tobago, multiple US officials tell CNN they are aware of a terror-related threat to the popular annual event.
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Tesla signaled it is making progress in overcoming its early production troubles building the Model 3 sedan, telling shareholders it expects to generate its first sustained operating profit sometime this year.
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The Chinese government on Saturday accused the US of trespassing in its territorial waters when a US guided missile destroyer sailed near a disputed shoal in the South China Sea, the AP reports. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang said China would take “necessary measures” to protect its sovereignty after…
Ever since the arrival of bitcoin cash, forked coins have been en vogue. While BCH has succeeded in gaining traction, not only on exchanges, but also in the real world, the stragglers have struggled. There is little evidence that the likes of bitcoin gold and bitcoin diamond are used for anything other than speculation. That speculation can see forked coins pumped to insane highs, as the events of the past 24 hours demonstrate.
Diamond in the Rough
The bitcoin community is, appropriately, split when it comes to forks. Some see these airdropped coins, which are issued to existing bitcoin holders, as an egalitarian distribution strategy that creates an instant user base and active community. Others aren’t so sure, questioning the motives behind these projects and the lack of infrastructure support.
Bitcoin diamond (BCD) was distributed at a BTC rate of 10:1 when it was released in late November. Within days, the forked coin had settled into a price bracket around the $ 30 mark, and with major exchanges such as Bitfinex and Bittrex refusing to touch it, diamond seemed destined to remain languishing in the doldrums. But in the trading stakes – or rather the pump and dump stakes – every coin has its day, and Saturday was BCD’s.
In a matter of minutes, the coin multiplied 40x on Kucoin, sending it over $ 800 and causing one of the largest green candles ever witnessed on an exchange. The movement prompted Kucoin to issue the following warning to its customers:
Night of the Long Forks
Starting on the evening of Friday January 12, traders went long on many of the bitcoin forks that have been created in recent months. Predictably, the action seemed to emanate from the Asian markets, before impacting on all global exchanges that supported the coins. Due to the low price of many of these coins – bitcoin file costs around $ 0.2 for example – coupled with low trading volume, orchestrating pumps is relatively easy.
For anyone who FOMOs hard and piles into these rising green candles, however, there is a high risk of failure. BCD’s meteoric movement was evidently an orchestrated P&D. Many traders, unaware of the pump and dump taking place, will have had sell orders set for bitcoin diamond. Once the scheme kicked in, eating through that resistance was a doddle.
The majority of forked coins have few real use cases, but the events of the past 24 hours may entice traders to set and forget their airdropped coins from now on. Given the meagre sums to be made from trading these coins at their regular price, it makes more sense to set an unrealistically high sell order, just in case the unthinkable happens.
Do you think exchanges ought to stop trading when coins are blatantly being pumped? Let us know in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock and Twitter.
Need to know the price of bitcoin? Check this chart.
The post Kucoin Issues a Warning After Bitcoin Diamond Soars 40x and Then Crashes appeared first on Bitcoin News.
President Donald Trump on Friday avoided upending the nuclear deal with Iran that he has repeatedly disparaged, agreeing to waive key sanctions the US lifted as part of the deal.
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The Malaysian financial regulator has issued an order to the team behind an Initial Coin Offering (ICO) to halt any operations in the country. This is just another example of how authorities in different regions are trying to limit access to ICOs from the investing public under their jurisdictions.
Malaysia Says No to ICO
The Securities Commission Malaysia (SC) has announced on Tuesday that it directed the Copycash Foundation to immediately cease and desist of all its proposed activities, including a purported plan to launch an ICO on 10 January 2018.
This SC directive covers all activities as described in Copycash Foundation’s white paper for the ICO, including any roadshows, seminars or promotional events related to the scheme in Malaysia. The commission says that the order was issued following an inquiry after it found that there is “a reasonable likelihood that disclosures in Copycash Foundation’s white paper and representations to potential investors will contravene relevant requirements under securities laws.”
Judging by its website, the forex and cryptocurrency social trading platform Copycash seems to be geared toward Chinese investors more than anything else. Considering this, the Malaysian directive might not affect it at all. News.bitcoin.com has reached out for comment and will update when it arrives.
The SC also advised investors to be cautious of the risks of fraud and exercise due diligence before participating in ICO schemes, beyond this particular one. The Malaysian commission says that, while it “continues to facilitate use cases of digital assets in the capital market, it remains vigilant in monitoring ICO schemes given the heightened risks, and will not hesitate to take action where necessary.”
Back in September 2017 the SC issued an official statement addressing the potential risks associated with investing in any ICO. The issues mentioned include the difficulty to “verify the authenticity of” an ICO, challenges regarding “the recovery of invested monies may be subject to foreign laws or regulations” in the event that ICOs are based outside of Malaysia, the potential for “digital tokens traded on a secondary market” to “give rise to risks of insufficient liquidity or volatile and opaque pricing”, and the absence of regulation and “legal protection for investors”. The SC also mentioned concerns regarding money laundering and terrorist financing risks.
Should regulators have a say in what ICOs people can invest in? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!
Images courtesy of Shutterstock.
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As the world starts to ring in the new year, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called upon the global community to unite and overcome challenges together on Sunday.
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Just recently, the Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM), the country’s central bank, has issued drafted digital currency regulatory guidelines for citizens and businesses residing in the region. The new regulations will fall under the country’s anti-money laundering and anti-terrorism financing act of 2001. If the guidelines are approved, cryptocurrency trading platforms must provide digital asset trade volume statistics, identify all customers, and also monitor transactions going in and out of the exchange.
The Bank Negara Malaysia: ‘A Digital Currency Exchanger Must Declare Its Details’
The central bank of Malaysia, BNM, has issued a draft of digital currency exchange regulations for public consultation. The laws will apply to all trading platforms that deal with cryptocurrencies, and any one individual can also be considered an “exchange” if they sell digital assets. For larger operations, there will be “transparency obligations” where trading platforms will be required to provide data to the BNM’s reporting entity.
“A digital currency exchanger must also declare its details to the Bank as a reporting institution,” explains the central bank.
Failure to declare its details as reporting institutions or comply with the reporting obligations may subject the digital currency exchangers to the enforcement and non-compliance actions as provided under the AMLA as well as the potential termination or denial of use of financial services in Malaysia.
Cryptocurrencies Like Bitcoin Are Not Legal Tender in Malaysia
Additionally, exchanges must comply with Know-Your-Customer (KYC) requirements when registering customers. The goal of verifying a user’s identity aims to provide adequate measures against money laundering, and terrorist financing, explains the bank. Further, the bank details that digital currencies are still not officially regulated, and there are significant risks tethered to operations dealing with cryptocurrencies before laws are enacted.
“The public is reminded that digital currencies are not legal tender in Malaysia,” the bank’s draft states. “Members of the public are advised to carefully evaluate the risks associated with dealings in digital currencies — This includes risks arising from high volatility in prices, the lack of deep markets and vulnerabilities to cyber-attack which can lead to significant losses.”
Users of digital currencies will also not be covered under established disputed resolution arrangements which exists for regulated financial institutions in the event of any dispute or losses.
Malaysian Citizens and Businesses May Write Written Feedback About the Proposed Laws
The proposed guidelines are considered the first steps towards making digital assets transparent in the country. BNM says they will be monitoring bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies to assess the risks retail investors face. Further, the central bank is welcoming written feedback in regard to the drafted legislation, and responses are due by January 14, 2018.
What do you think about the Bank Negara Malaysia and its proposed digital currency exchange legislation? Let us know what you think in the comments below.
Images via Shutterstock, and Bank Negara Malaysia
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