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Major Korean Exchange Bithumb Expanding into Japan and Thailand

July 16, 2018 |

Major Korean Exchange Bithumb Expanding into Japan and Thailand

One of South Korea’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, Bithumb, is expanding into Japan and Thailand. The exchange is working on obtaining regulatory approval from the financial regulators of both countries. The new locations are part of the exchange’s global expansion plan.

Also read: Yahoo! Japan Confirms Entrance Into the Crypto Space

Expanding into Thailand

Major Korean Exchange Bithumb Expanding into Japan and ThailandBithumb is currently working on obtaining regulatory approval from the Thai Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), local media reported Friday. The exchange is the second largest in South Korea at the time of this writing, with a 24-hour trading volume of about $ 358 million, behind only the Kakao-backed Upbit with a $ 582 million trading volume during the same time period.

The exchange has already established a Thai subsidiary, Bithumb (Thailand) Company Limited, with registered capital of 3 million baht (~US$ 90,000). Zdnet quoted the company explaining the reason for its expansion into the Thai market:

Thailand is active in e-commerce and the fintech industry, and the government is showing great interest in digital currency as it promotes smart city business.

Thailand has recently finalized its regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies and initial coin offerings (ICOs). Bithumb has been building its Thai website, the publication added, noting that it plans to start service in Thailand at the end of October.

Major Korean Exchange Bithumb Expanding into Japan and Thailand
Bithumb Thailand’s website. Photo: Zdnet.

Expansion into Japan

Major Korean Exchange Bithumb Expanding into Japan and Thailand
Bithumb Japan’s website. Photo: Zdnet.

Japan legalized cryptocurrency as a means of payment in April of last year. All companies seeking to operate an exchange in the country must obtain approval from the country’s top financial regulator, the Financial Services Agency (FSA). However, with the hack of Coincheck in January, the FSA has been strengthening its oversight of crypto exchanges and imposing a stricter exchange approval process.

Nonetheless, Bithumb is seeking approval from the FSA with a plan to open an exchange in Japan in February next year, the news outlet conveyed. The exchange also revealed that “it plans to set up an exchange that supports the largest number of coins in Japan,” the publication noted.

Global Expansion Plan

Major Korean Exchange Bithumb Expanding into Japan and ThailandEarlier this year, Bithumb announced that it is looking for partners for its global expansion. The exchange says it will work closely with overseas partners to launch platforms that are faster and more efficient for traders worldwide.

Projects which Bithumb will collaborate with potential partners include “cash (deposit/remittance/debit) management processing, the operation of an exchange platform, [and] marketing & promotion and customer service,” the exchange detailed. According to the announcement:

Bithumb is preparing exchange platforms for countries under the global expansion plan and we are looking for great and potential partners (corporation, entity or group) worldwide…The exchange platforms under final development stages are USD / JYP / EUR / CNY / INR / GBP / AUD / CAD / PHP / RUB and [there] will be more soon when there are any service demands.

According to Money Today, Bithumb has also established a subsidiary in Singapore and Britain. “We are considering establishing overseas subsidiaries in various countries such as the U.S. and Europe, but the time has not yet been determined,” the exchange clarified.

In April, the third largest crypto exchange in South Korea, Coinone, announced its expansion into Indonesia.

What do you think of Bithumb expanding into Thailand and Japan? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Bithumb, and Zdnet.


Need to calculate your bitcoin holdings? Check our tools section.

The post Major Korean Exchange Bithumb Expanding into Japan and Thailand appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

In Thailand, a Tearful Reunion Through Glass

July 11, 2018 |

“It’s like a rebirth.” That’s how a father is viewing his 11-year-old son’s rescue as part of a soccer team pulled by divers from a flooded cave in Thailand. “Everybody started to cry,” he adds of the moment Wednesday when family members were reunited at a hospital with some of…
Newser

The Latest: China urges Thailand to step up boat rescue

July 9, 2018 |

The Latest on a boat capsizing in Thailand (all times local): 2:30 p.m.
FOX News

TMZ

Soccer Boys Rescued from Thailand Cave

July 8, 2018 |

Rescuers in Thailand have stunningly removed some of the boys trapped in a flooded, treacherous cave. Four of the boys made an 8 hour trek — with the help of Thailand’s navy SEAL unit — scuba diving to safety.  The 4 boys were immediately…

TMZ.com

First boys of soccer team rescued from flooded Thailand cave, local official says

July 8, 2018 |

The first two boys were rescued from a flooded cave in Thailand on Sunday, hours after divers began their operation to free the 12 boys and their coach who have been trapped for more than two weeks, a local official said.
FOX News

Thailand Officially Announces Rules for Token Issuers, Portals, and Investors

July 6, 2018 |

Thailand Officially Announces Rules for Token Issuers, Portals, and Investors

The Thai Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has officially announced its regulations for initial coin offerings (ICOs). The rules specify requirements for ICO portals, issuers, as well as who can invest in tokens. The Commission has also provided a series of infographics to explain the regulations.

Also read: Yahoo! Japan Confirms Entrance Into the Crypto Space

Thai SEC’s Official Statement

Thailand Officially Announces Rules for Token Issuers, Portals, and Investors
Rapee Sucharitakul.

The Thai SEC officially announced Wednesday the regulations for ICOs, which will take effect from July 16, according to local media.

The ICO regulations fall under the Digital Asset Management Act BE 2561 which regulates cryptocurrency in the country, Thai Rath newspaper quoted Mr. Rapee Sucharitakul, Secretary-General of the Thai SEC, explaining.

Along with the announcement, the Commission has published a series of infographics to explain the regulations which are shown below.

ICO Portals

Mr. Rapee detailed, as reported by Prachachat Turakij, “those wanting to launch an ICO must undergo screening from an ICO portal. So, initially, the SEC will first approve ICO portals.” A platform wanting to operate as an ICO portal must apply for approval from the Commission which can take up to 90 days. “Once the portal has been approved, the SEC will begin to consider applications for the issuance and sale of digital tokens,” he clarified.

Thailand Officially Announces Rules for Token Issuers, Portals, and Investors

An ICO portal applicant must be a Thai company with registered capital of at least 5 million baht (~US$ 150,636). Citing that ICO portals must identify “investors’ status, identity, and risk-taking ability,” the Bangkok Post elaborated:

ICO portals’ management structure and personnel must be adequate for business operations. They are also required to be prepared to evaluate ICO issuers’ business plans and the distribution structure of digital tokens as well as perform checks to ensure that computer code, or source code, matches the disclosed information.

Furthermore, the news outlet quoted Mr. Rapee saying, “the SEC is pleased to immediately discuss details with those who would like to be approved as ICO portals in order for them to be prepared for the regulatory framework.”

ICO Issuers

Anyone wanting to launch an ICO in Thailand will first need to obtain an approval from an ICO portal before applying with the SEC. Upon obtaining an approval from an ICO portal, a would-be issuer can subsequently apply with the SEC, supplying details of the ICO. The SEC can take up to 60 days to make a decision.

Thailand Officially Announces Rules for Token Issuers, Portals, and Investors

In a statement to Reuters, the Commission explained that “issuers of digital tokens must be a company registered under Thai law and will be able to offer such assets of an unlimited amount to institutional investors, ultra high net-worth investors, venture capital and private equity firms,” adding:

Issuers of such tokens can accept baht or cryptocurrencies, including bitcoin, bitcoin cash, ethereum, ethereum classic, litecoin, ripple and stellar.

Who Can Invest in ICOs in Thailand

The SEC has also set rules on who can invest in ICOs, divided them into four groups. The first consists of institutional investors. Ultra-high net worth investors make up the second group, which the SEC defines as retail investors with net worth of at least 70 million baht (~$ 2.1 million) or those with investments of at least 25 million baht (~$ 752,785). The third group consists of venture capitalists and private equity firms. The last group comprises other retail investors, but their investment is capped at 300,000 baht (~$ 9,034) per person and per ICO project, “or no more than 70% of total value of offered tokens,” the Bangkok Post added.

Thailand Officially Announces Rules for Token Issuers, Portals, and Investors

As for taxation, the country’s finance minister, Mr. Apisak Tantivorawong, said in March that “the finance ministry will impose a 15% withholding tax on gains from digital tokens and cryptocurrency trade,” Reuters reiterated, adding that “there will also be a 7% value-added tax, but general investors will be exempted.”

What do you think of Thailand’s ICO rules? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock and the Thai SEC.


Need to calculate your bitcoin holdings? Check our tools section.

The post Thailand Officially Announces Rules for Token Issuers, Portals, and Investors appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Thailand Expects to Approve Five ICO Projects out of 50

June 14, 2018 |

Thailand Expects to Approve Five ICO Projects Out of 50

The Thai financial regulator is expected to approve five ICO projects once the new regulatory framework takes effect this month. Out of 50 ICO projects in the country, only five satisfy the registration requirements set out by the regulator this week.

Also read: Yahoo! Japan Confirms Entrance Into the Crypto Space

Five ICO Projects Expected to be Approved

Thailand Expects to Approve Five ICO Projects Out of 50The Thai Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is expected to approve five initial coin offering (ICO) projects once the law to regulate cryptocurrencies and ICOs goes into effect, according to the Bangkok Post. The Commission approved the relevant regulations earlier this week and expects them to become law by the end of the month, as news.Bitcoin.com previously reported.

While the SEC has not revealed which ICO projects will be approved, Mr. Thawatchai Kiatkwankul, the Commission’s director of corporate finance in the equity department, was quoted by the news outlet:

Out of 50 ICO projects expecting to raise funds from the Thai capital market, five are ready as initial pilot projects.

The announcement follows two recently launched ICOs in Thailand: Jfin Coin by Jay Mart Plc’s subsidiary, J Ventures Limited, and ZMN tokens by Zmine Holdings.

New ICOs Expected in Q3

Before the law takes effect, the regulator has put the brakes on all new ICOs. However, “Previously-leveraged companies are still able to make transactions as normal since the law does not apply retroactively,” Krungthep Turakij explained.

Thailand Expects to Approve Five ICO Projects Out of 50
Mrs. Tipsuda Thavaramara.

Mrs. Tipsuda Thavaramara, Deputy Secretary-General of the Thai SEC in charge of Policy and Corporate Finance Groups, said this week that an ICO issuer must first gain approval from the ICO portal it wants to be listed on, Prachachat Turakij described. ICO portals will act like financial advisors to the issuers, making sure that all know-your-customer (KYC) rules are followed. After gaining the approval of the ICO portal, the SEC will take about two months to review the ICO before approving it.

Companies wanting to issue tokens must satisfy a number of criteria set by the SEC. For starters, they must have registered capital of at least 5 million baht (~US$ 156,625).

Retail investors can only invest up to 300,000 baht (~$ 9,343) per ICO project or no more than 70% of the total value of offered tokens, as news.Bitcoin.com previously reported. The limits do not exist for institutional and ultra-high-net-worth investors.

Thai SEC’s Future Plans for ICOs

Mr. Thawatchai Kiatkwankul added that in the future the Commission “is preparing to expand and combine its unit for registration of ICOs with initial public offerings (IPOs),” the Bangkok Post conveyed. Citing that ICO projects have growth potential, he further noted that the SEC will work with ICO portals to screen potential scams.

The publication elaborated, with reference to the director:

Rules and regulations related to digital asset investment and transactions could be eased, given that market participants are more educated on digital asset investment and domestic competition is on a par with other digital asset markets.

What do you think of Thailand’s policies on ICOs? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock and Thai SEC.


Need to calculate your bitcoin holdings? Check our tools section.

The post Thailand Expects to Approve Five ICO Projects out of 50 appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Thailand Unveils Details of Crypto Regulations, Legalizing 7 Cryptocurrencies

June 9, 2018 |

Thailand Unveils Details of Crypto Regulations, Legalizing 7 Cryptocurrencies

The Securities and Exchange Commission of Thailand has unveiled the details of the country’s regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies and initial coin offerings, including licensing requirements, fees, and a list of seven approved cryptocurrencies.

Also read: Yahoo! Japan Confirms Entrance Into the Crypto Space

Approved Cryptocurrencies

The Thai Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced on Friday the details of the country’s cryptocurrency and initial coin offering (ICO) regulations. The measures were approved at the regulator’s June 7 meeting and are expected to go into effect later on this month, according to local media. “The proposed approach has been through public hearings in several channels,” MGR Online wrote.

Thailand Unveils Details of Crypto Regulations, Legalizing 7 Cryptocurrencies
Tipsuda Thavaramara.

This announcement follows the decree which went into effect on May 14, putting the Thai SEC in charge of crypto regulations. It also follows the country’s crypto taxation announcement.

According to SEC deputy secretary-general Tipsuda Thavaramara, the Commission’s regulatory scope includes ICOs, crypto exchanges, brokerage firms, dealers and other parties permitted by the Finance Ministry, the Bangkok Post reported, adding that initially:

The SEC will allow seven cryptocurrencies, used for initial coin offerings (ICOs), to be traded as trading pairs. They are bitcoin, ethereum, bitcoin cash, ethereum classic, litecoin, ripple, and stellar.

“Some of the main criteria used by the SEC to assess cryptocurrency trading pairs,” the news outlet detailed, are the “consensus credibility and cryptocurrency liquidity.” Thai Rath publication added that these seven cryptocurrencies are approved because they do not promote privacy.

Licenses

According to the Bangkok Post, the SEC expects about 10 firms to apply for licenses, half of which will be crypto exchanges and the rest crypto brokers and dealers. Citing that crypto exchanges have until August 14 to apply for licenses, the news outlet elaborated:

All market participants, including ICO issuers, digital exchanges, brokers and dealers involved with digital asset transactions, are required to register with the SEC within 90 days of the effective date…The participants must also receive the Finance Ministry’s approval to conduct digital asset business.

Only registered companies in Thailand can apply for licenses, the Finance Ministry clarified. There is an upfront fee of 5 million baht (~US$ 156,194), “which is separated into 2.5 million each for token distribution and cryptocurrency operations,” the publication described. “Fees charged for brokerage firms and digital asset dealers are 2.5 million and 2 million baht, respectively.”

Annual Fees and Registered Capital

There are also annual fees: 0.002% of the total trading volume for crypto exchanges and 0.001% of the total trading volume for brokerage firms. The minimum fee for the former is 500,000 baht (~$ 15,619) and 250,000 baht (~$ 7,810) for the latter. The maximum fee is 20 million baht (~$ 624,775) for the former and 5 million baht (~$ 156,200) for the latter.

Thailand Unveils Details of Crypto Regulations, Legalizing 7 CryptocurrenciesIn addition, the publication wrote, “Registered capital for digital exchanges is stipulated at 50 million baht for a centralised exchange and 25 million for brokers, while a decentralised exchange is at 10 million and a decentralised broker is at 5 million.” However, the news outlet did not clarify how decentralized brokers and exchanges without a company associated with them would satisfy these requirements.

Furthermore, “Brokers solely involved with sending trading orders are required to have 1 million baht worth of registered capital, while dealers are required to have 5 million in registered capital,” the news outlet conveyed.

ICO Restrictions

Thailand Unveils Details of Crypto Regulations, Legalizing 7 CryptocurrenciesIn order to receive approval from the SEC, token issuers “must state clearly the type of tokens being issued, as well as investment information,” the publication noted. ICO portals must have registered capital of at least 5 million baht (~$ 156,625) and are required to look after ICO offerings for at least a year.

There is no limit given to the amount of ICOs that can be offered to institutional and ultra-high-net-worth investors. However, “investment is capped at 300,000 baht for retail investors per person and per ICO project or no more than 70% of total value of offered tokens.”

According to the publication:

Sellers of unauthorised digital tokens and those setting up unauthorised seminars to solicit cryptocurrency investment will be fined no more than twice the value of the digital transaction or at least 500,000 baht [~$ 15,619.88]. They could also face a jail term of up to two years.

What do you think of Thailand’s crypto regulations? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, MGR Online, and Thai SEC.


Need to calculate your bitcoin holdings? Check our tools section.

The post Thailand Unveils Details of Crypto Regulations, Legalizing 7 Cryptocurrencies appeared first on Bitcoin News.

Bitcoin News

Your Old Computer May Be Headed for Thailand

May 31, 2018 |

One of the most popular tourist destinations in the world has become “a new dumping ground for scrap electronics,” as Reuters puts it. At a shipping port south of Bangkok, Thailand, police on Tuesday displayed seven shipping containers filled with more than 150 tons of discarded computer and game console…
Newser