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Screenshot of a breaking news alert e-mail from Q2 2017
Thailand has now joined the long list of countries that went against Bitcoin and digital currencies as a whole. According to press, Thailand’s central bank said on Monday, February 12th that it had asked financial institutions not to get involved in cryptocurrency transactions for fear of possible problems from the unregulated trading.
What that means essentially is that banks in Thailand and financial institutions will not be able from now on to trade cryptocurrencies, give advice, operate on any exchanges or transact in any ways if the transaction involves any types of cryptos. All platforms for cryptocurrency exchanges will be banned as well.
The central bank of Thailand said also that financial institutions are banned from allowing clients to use credit cards to buy cryptocurrency, and from advising customers on investing or trading in cryptocurrency in any way.
Again, as with almost all regulations, the worry is that digital currencies may be used for illegal activities such as financing terrorism, laundering money, financing prostitution, etc.
Essentially, what the central bank of Thailand has done is convince banks “to regulate” and not ban digital currencies.
According to Cointelegraph, Thai Finance Minister Apisak Tantivorawong had stated on Feb. 7 that the Thai government will not ban crypto trading, but will work on constructing a regulatory framework for digital currencies, the Bangkok Post reported. The Bank of Thailand’s circular can be seen as warning banks away from crypto until this regulatory framework can be implemented.
In September, 2017, Thailand’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC Thailand) had also announced a willingness to support Initial Coin Offerings (ICO) by implementing regulations that would protect investors against fraud. Yesterday, Feb.12, SEC secretary-general Rapee Sucharitakul said the SEC does not have the ability to block crypto transactions as they are traded through online platforms, but will attempt to educate investors to protect them from ICO scams, the Bangkok Post reported.
There is no clear explanation to how cryptos are going to evolve with such regulations coming from all sides.