South Korea to decide what to do about crypto exchanges after talks

Seoul, South Korea-A Screen shows the prices of bitcoin at a virtual currency exchange store in Seoul, South Korea. South Korean is actually studying ways to regulate speculative trading in crypto currencies as the latest surge in prices stokes a craze over bitcoins.

Seung-il Ryu | NurPhoto | Getty Images

Seoul, South Korea-A Screen shows the prices of bitcoin at a virtual currency exchange store in Seoul, South Korea. South Korean is actually studying ways to regulate speculative trading in crypto currencies as the latest surge in prices stokes a craze over bitcoins.

South Korea will make a decision on a proposed ban on cryptocurrency exchanges after “sufficient consultation along with coordination of opinions,” the country’s government said Monday.

Last week, South Korean Justice Minister Park Sang-ki said the government was preparing a bill to ban trading via cryptocurrency exchanges. Two of the country’s largest crypto exchanges, Coinone along with Bithumb, were also raided on the day Park’s comments were made.

“The proposed shutdown of exchanges of which the justice minister recently mentioned is actually one of the measures suggested by the justice ministry to curb speculation. A government-wide decision will be made from the future after sufficient consultation along with coordination of opinions,” the country’s Office for Government Policy Coordination said in a statement, according to South Korean news agency Yonhap.

This particular clarification on the government’s stance follows comments last Thursday coming from South Korean Finance Minister Kim Dong-yeon, who said of which the issue required more consultation coming from relevant government departments.

“All government ministries agree on the need for a government response to an overheating in cryptocurrency speculation along with for a degree of regulation,” Kim told reporters, according to news agency Yonhap.

“The issue of banning exchanges of which the justice minister talked about yesterday is actually a proposal by the Justice Ministry along with the idea needs more coordination among ministries.”

South Korea has been trying to rein in speculative cryptocurrency trading in recent months, as interest from the market has exploded. In September, the Financial Services Commission said the idea could ban a controversial crowdfunding practice from the cryptocurrency space known as initial coin offerings (ICO). ICOs are a means of fundraising for start-ups, who raise money by selling off completely new virtual currencies in return for different more established ones like bitcoin along with ethereum.

Major cryptocurrencies including bitcoin along with ethereum are priced significantly higher in South Korea’s exchanges compared to the rest of the planet. Industry website CoinMarketCap said last Monday the idea had excluded some South Korean crypto exchanges coming from its data due to This particular “extreme divergence in prices.”

Bitcoin, ethereum along with different major digital currencies fell after reports of a ban on cryptocurrency trading first circulated. The cost of bitcoin was seen to recover slightly Monday, trading 0.39 percent higher on CoinDesk at $13,671.55 a coin. CoinDesk’s bitcoin cost index tracks prices coming from digital currency exchanges Bitstamp, Coinbase, itBit along with Bitfinex. Ethereum on the different hand was down 3.93 percent, trading at £1,312.97 a coin.

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