Clearer Ground Rules for Thai Crypto Space

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Clearer Ground Rules for Thai Crypto Space

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Thailand has clarified its position and some new rules regarding the holding and purchasing of cryptocurrencies in a royal decree published on 13 May on a royal gazette, according to the Bangkok Post.

The Royal Thai Government Gazette, frequently abbreviated Government Gazette (GG) or Royal Gazette, is the public journal and newspaper of record of Thailand. Laws passed by the government generally come into force after publication in the GG.

Thailand’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has announced that offerings of digital currency will not be allowed until the new regulations are finalized in June, according to Reuters. The decree, which took effect on Monday, requires sellers and operators to register assets to the SEC within 90 days. Sellers of digital tokens unauthorized by the SEC will be fined no more than twice the value of the digital transaction or at least 500,000 Thai baht (THB or approximately USD 15,500) and could also face a jail term of up to two years.

The Bangkok Times has reported that finance minister Apisak Tantivorawong said that the law was necessary to regulate cryptocurrencies and digital tokens to prevent money laundering, tax avoidance, and crime.

In early April 2018, Thailand’s ministry of finance released plans to tax cryptocurrency trading and investments according. The proposed 15% capital gains tax is considered by digital asset operators in Thailand to be a stifling figure for the industry. It puts financial pressure on startups seeking to break into the blockchain and cryptocurrency industry, which could hinder overall innovation in the country. There is also a 7% VAT charged on all cryptocurrency trades in the country.

Minister Tantivorawong made it clear that the new rules were “not meant to prohibit cryptocurrencies, initial coin offerings (ICOs) and other digital asset-related transactions, but to protect investors”.

“Good news for Thai crypto enthusiasts was provided by The Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET) earlier this month at the announcement of a blockchain-powered crowdfunding platform to facilitate startups and small enterprises in the Southeast Asian country,” CCN reports.

The platform, known as LiVE, plans to provide a “complete startup ecosystem” which will also provide education for new businesses and easier access to institutional investors. So far, only eight businesses have been targetted by SET, but there are plans to ask more than 50 companies to join the program.

 

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