ICO Industry

South Korean Lawmakers Seek Reversal of Ban on ICOs

JP Buntinx | May 3, 2018 | 12:00 pm
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ICO

South Korean Lawmakers Seek Reversal of Ban on ICOs

JP Buntinx | May 3, 2018 | 12:00 pm

The regulatory landscape in South Korea tends to change quite a bit. Especially when it comes to cryptocurrency and ICOs, the future looks rather bright. A new proposal seeks to legalize the launch of new initial coin offerings in this part of the world. The bill has not been officially approved or endorsed, yet it sets a positive tone in general.

Legalizing ICOs in South Korea

A few people were surprised when South Korean officials decided to “ban” initial coin offerings. At that time, the ICO industry was firing on all cylinders, yet posted a lot of regulatory concerns. To this day, most of these concerns are still valid. However, one can argue the industry as a whole has begun to mature, which is a positive trend. So much even that South Korean lawmakers are prepared to take a completely different approach.

Various lawmakers introduced a new bill to legalize future initial coin offerings and cryptocurrencies. For now, the group is still working on the bill in question. An official ‘verdict’ on this proposal will not materialize until later this year or early 2019. It is the first time officials in South Korea challenge the government’s ban on ICOs.

As one would expect, this bill will still require government supervision. Removing uncertainties and challenges regarding ICO companies is the top priority. Unlike what most would assume, this will not allow for hundreds of ICOs to be launched every month. Instead, online public organizations and research centers can launch such token sales. It is a small step in the right direction to bring more legitimacy to this popular business model.

Cryptocurrencies Remain Popular

The cryptocurrency industry itself hasn’t been affected by the ban on ICOs all that much. South Korean trading platforms still remain popular for altcoin trading. Although less successful in the Bitcoin market, companies such as Bithumb, Upbit, and Korbit are all well-respected names. There is a very big difference between regular cryptocurrencies and ICO tokens, after all.

This new bill doesn’t mean anything will change for cryptocurrencies themselves. South Korean officials have been open-minded when it comes to Bitcoin and altcoin regulation. While they dislike the speculative investment angle associated with Bitcoin and consorts, there is no hostility toward trading such currencies. That situation is always subject to change.

With other Asian countries still cracking down on ICOs, South Korea can set a major precedent. If this bill suits all parties and gets approved, other countries may follow this example. For now, the community has to wait and see how this proposal pans out. There are still legitimate concerns over the ICO industry right now. With the number of scam projects rising, cracking down on this model only makes more sense.

 

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  • John Emery

    This will be great. I think South Korea will be a great market for projects like Algebraix where they reward users for their attention.

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