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Korea to Take It Easier on Cryptocurrency Trading Regulations



The incoming head of Korea’s financial regulator has confirmed that they are considering easing up on regulations involving domestic cryptocurrency trading.

Speaking to local media after being approved by President Moon Jae-in to head the Financial Supervisory Service (FSS), new governor Yoon Suk-heun relayed that the regulator is looking at amending some regulations that are being applied to the cryptocurrency market.

Yoon, a visiting professor at Seoul National University, was nominated by the Financial Services Commission (FSC) – Korea’s financial regulator – to be the head of the FSS, which it directs. The new top official is seen as a “reform-minded” activist with knowledge as a bureaucrat in the country.

He said:

“Regarding cryptocurrencies, there are some positive aspects…The FSS will collaborate with the FSC when an inspection on policies and financial institutions has different configurations associated with different scopes. FSC inspects policies, while the FSS examines and supervises financial institutions but with the oversight of the FSC.”

As reported back in September, the FSS handed the ban order to restrict initial coin offerings (ICOs) in South Korea. In January, the FSC implemented a ban on all anonymous cryptocurrency trading by ordering – among both crypto exchanges and the banks providing services to them – the use of real-name trading accounts.

The move is seen as a measure that would prevent anonymous trading while urging KYC-enabled practices in the industry, has dented the market instead.

“Markets expected the introduction of the real-name registration system would have been helpful to revive trading, but these efforts failed as local banks were reluctant to invite more crypto traders,” said a Bithumb official.

Yoon declined to speak further on the potential regulatory changes the FSS would consider for crypto exchanges when asked by reporters, stating:

“There are a lot of issues that need to be addressed and reviewed. We can figure them out but gradually.”

New FSS chief Yoon Suk-heun would start his tenure at the job today.

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