Thailand’s Financial Regulator Licenses 3 Cryptocurrency Exchanges, Rejects 2



Last Updated: January 10, 2019 at 9:15 AM EST

The Thai Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on January 8 announced the result of its review of seven cryptocurrency companies in Thailand. Accordingly, three exchanges and one broker-dealer have been licensed. On the other hand, two cryptocurrency exchanges were rejected which leads to discontinuation of their service in the region.

List of Companies Which Were Reviewed

The cryptocurrency exchanges which were approved in the Southeast Asian country are  Bitkub Online Co. Ltd. (Bitkub), Bitcoin Exchange Co. Ltd. (Bx), and Satang Corporation (Satang Pro). The broker-dealer is Coins Th Co. Ltd. However, Cash2coin Co. Ltd. and Southeast Asia Digital Exchange Co. Ltd. (Seadex) were rejected.

Asides these companies, another’s license is pending and this is Coin Asset Co. Ltd., a digital asset operator. The SEC says the latter’s application is pending because of a change in its executives. Nevertheless, Coin Asset will still be in operation while it is being reviewed. Whatever plans the SEC finalizes in their regards will lead to their next course of action.

Rejected Companies to Relocate by January 14

Rejection means that the two companies will have to move from the jurisdiction by January 14. The country’s ministry of finance has given them both this time frame to finalize their dealings with their clients. Specifically, the SEC has ordered them to notify their clients on a return of their assets or its transfer to other virtual exchanges upon the client’s request.

While commenting on the reason behind their disapproval, the Thai SEC noted the inconsistency in their Know Your Customer (KYC) processes. They also added that their systems for cybersecurity systems and IT security were unverifiable.

In the SEC’s own words;

The application rejection this time does not invalidate their right to apply for a digital asset business licence in the future as long as the application criteria are met.

Central Bank Governor Believes Crypto Will Take Time to Replace Fiat

Although Thailand has provided an environment for the cryptocurrency industry to thrive, Dr. Veerathai Santiprabhob, the Central Bank Governor is of the opinion that it will take some time for virtual currencies to replace fiat. The Governor’s belief was reported on November 20, where he was quoted to have said it will take at least 3 to 5 years for this change to take place.

BTCNN also reported on January 4 of Thailand’s pilot of a Blockchain-based e-voting system. Plans were made to test the said system in Universities and at the community level to ascertain its level of performance.