New Zealand is finally about to launch its first ICO with cryptocurrency exchange Coingrid planning to begin a USD 3 million fundraiser in the next two weeks.
Although New Zealand’s Minister of State for Trade and Export Damien O’Connor is positive there is a real desire in the government to be in the vanguard of promoting new technologies in the region, cryptocurrency has not had such an easy ride. SBS Bank’s group chief executive Shaun Drylie reflects the current feeling that while blockchain is here to stay, cryptocurrency still needs to convince New Zealand’s traditional financial community:
“We think, and the common consensus is, that it [blockchain] has real merit. Cryptocurrencies, we’re not too sure, and if you look at the volatility of cryptocurrencies that would suggest the market is not too sure as well.”
Despite New Zealand being one of the strictest countries in the world regarding cryptocurrency, this hasn’t stopped Coingrid forging ahead with their plans to break new ground with plans for a domestic ICO launch on 23 November.
Coingrid says that it is the country’s “friendliest cryptocurrency exchange” although it is not exactly clear what it’s based its self-description on. However, to avoid New Zealand’s still somewhat unclear regulations regarding the trading of cryptocurrencies, Coingrid have been dealing directly with regulators. ICOs are generally registered overseas to avoid government regulations, which still lack clarity.
The approach by Coingrid is an, as yet, untested approach by other cryptocurrency exchanges. By dealing directly with New Zealand’s Financial Markets Authority (FMA), the exchange is now able to launch New Zealand’s first domestic ICO.
Despite the county’s crypto caution, stablecoins continue to attract attention. There are plans to peg the New Zealand Dollar (NZD) to the NZDT, a stablecoin issued by the country’s leading exchange Cryptopia which has a daily trading volume in excess of USD 2 million.
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