ICO News: S. Korea moves toward ICO legalization

Min Byung-Doo, a high-ranking member of the governing Democratic party and the chairman of Korea’s National Policy Committee, is pushing for the legalization of ICOs (initial coin offerings).

ICO News: S. Korea moves toward ICO legalization

Chairman Min (pictured below) spoke to the importance of regulation and said, if S. Korea is to compete in the global financial economy, then it must embrace new technologies in the right way.

Speaking at the National Assembly of South Korea meeting, he said: “Regulation is not bad. Regulation is necessary, it is the only way to legitimize the market and allow investors to build trust towards the cryptocurrency market.”

“A new trend in the global market”

Carrying on in the same vein, Min said: “The government cannot dismiss ICO. It needs to allow companies to conduct ICO.

“ICO has become a new trend in the global market and it is the responsibility and ability of the government to embrace new technologies.”

Min went on to mention Telegram and Block.One specifically, citing their respective high-grossing ICOs to drive home the need for regulation.

He said: “We can see that the flow of investment is clearly changing compared to ICO and angel fundraising.

“The ICO has raised $1.7 billion for Telegram and $4 billion for Block.One, It is getting bigger and bigger,” he added.

Image result for telegram

“The risk is very high”

Not everyone shares Min’s enthusiasm for ICOs and cryptocurrencies in general, however.

Indeed, Choi Jong-Ku, the chairman of the Financial Services Commission (FSC), famously prevented Kakao, S. Korea’s biggest internet conglomerate, from conducting a domestic token sale.

Instead, Kakao established an office Switzerland, a hotbed for ICOs thank to its lax regulations, and raised funds via ICO there.

Even then, Chairman Choi (pictured below) suggested that this could be considered an illicit fund raising method.

Image result for Chairman Choi

He said: “Even if there is no prohibition on cryptocurrency or digital asset trading, there is a possibility that it [Kakao ICO] may be regarded as fraud or multi-level sales according to the issuance method.

“Since the risk is very high in terms of investor protection, the government has a negative stance on the ICO,” he concluded.

However, Chairman Min appears determined to ensure that regulation is put in place to allow ICOs to be conducted in a lawful way within the country.

“Let the government, the National Assembly and the blockchain association quickly create a working group to block fraud, speculation, money laundering and develop the block-chain industry”, he urged.

South Korea banned ICOs back in September of last year following a flurry of fraudulent token sales.

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