Welcome to another weekly blockchain news roundup from around the world. Here we present to you all the latest Bitcoin news continent by continent and country by country.
Asia and Australia
Japanese exchange hacked: Japanese exchange Bitpoint has been hacked and cryptocurrency worth USD 23 million has been stolen from the wallets according to Remixpoint, the parent company of the exchange. Independent monitors point out to more.
According to various media reports, Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Litecoin, and XRP were stolen from the exchange.
Richest demographic heavily investing in crypto: The wealthiest demographic in South Korea is actively investing in cryptocurrencies and blockchain projects.
SK Group, one of the largest corporations in the country, is seeking to invest in ConsenSys, a blockchain platform being developed by Ethereum co-founder Joseph Lubin. Other local corporations have also invested heavily in blockchain systems including Samsung Electronics.
Facebook won’t launch Libra in India due to regulatory issues: Facebook has stated that it won’t launch its digital wallet service and cryptocurrency in India due to regulatory concerns.
According to a recent interview with The Economic Times: “There are no plans to offer Calibra in India. As you may know, there are local restrictions within India that made a launch of Calibra not possible at this time.”
The move comes after the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) stopped banks from providing services to cryptocurrency related firms. While the RBI’s order has been challenged in the courts, it will take some time and effort to reverse it and Facebook will likely wait for its scrapping before announcing a release in the country.
Government may allow WeChat to continue with its own digital currency initiative: Mainland Chinese government may allow WeChat to continue with its digital currency initiative. The move comes despite mainland China’s blanket ban on cryptocurrencies operating in the country.
Since Whatsapp is banned in the country, WeChat is the most popular social media platform in the country and is used for many e-commerce activities. To counter Facebook’s approach, WeChat may be allowed to go ahead with its digital currency initiative, thus becoming a first in the country.
Experts believe Asia is ripe for stablecoin deployment: While the current generation of mainly USD-bagged stablecoins are mostly rising from USA and the West, it is believed that Asia could be the next frontier for the sector according to leading experts.
According to George Harra, CEO of cryptocurrency-to-cash initiative Bitspark:
“Following the aftermath of 2018’s price drop—which saw the value of Bitcoin below 80 percent of the value from its all-time high—stablecoins are looking to become a more attractive crypto solution this year, particularly in the Asia-Pacific Region.”
Aditya the CEO of Backpacker coin, a USD-backed stablecoin project:
“The Asian markets are going strong and it is from here that the next phase of developments in digital currencies can be expected”
Bitcoin now accepted on Independent Grocers of Australia: The Independent Grocers of Australia, a network of 1,400 independent retailers across the country, is now accepting payment in Bitcoin and other leading crypto, according to a new Nugget’s report. The move is being made with a partnership with TravelbyBit.
According to Caleb Yeoh, the co-founder of TravelbyBit:
“Regardless of whether I’m buying eggs, milk, fruit, or vegetables, I now have a way to pay for my groceries with cryptocurrency. The same goes for any other cryptocurrency owners shopping at Bowen Hills IGA.”
IGA follows a global trend in increasing acceptance of cryptocurrencies by retailers.
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