After passing a regulation banning ICOs, sources close to the South Korean government are reporting that they considering reversing the ban. Korean Daily, the Korean Times reports that “the financial authorities are preparing a plan to allow initial coin offerings (ICOs), digital token-based fundraising rounds, for domestic investors, to advance blockchain-based technologies, according to sources familiar with the issue.”
An authority who wasn’t allowed to speak with the media said to the publication that, “the financial authorities have been talking to the country’s tax agency, justice ministry and other relevant government offices about a plan to allow ICOs in Korea when certain conditions are met.”
A more official view came from the country’s Kang Young-soo, who oversees cryptocurrency trading policies at South Korea’s Financial Service Commission, when he said, “there are many speculating about the possibility of allowing ICOs. The FSC has acknowledged a third-party view regarding the issue, but there’s nothing that we can say officially at the moment.”
The official also added that the government has to have plans on how to advance blockchain-related technologies and effectively regulate crypto-trading and that the country has no plans to regulate cryptocurrencies and blockchain technologies, while it tries to work out how to regulate the market.
What does this mean?
The government’s biggest problem with cryptocurrencies lies in its inability to effectively leverage taxes from cities who hold the currency. However, forward thinking countries like Japan have shown one way of handling it, by taking every ICO on a case by case method, and on the other hand, countries like China have gone for an outright ban. When South Korea announced their ICO ban, it was particularly disheartening, as this is a country that is at the forefront of embracing and implementing new technologies.
This rumour is welcome and the official statement also seems to suggest that there is some discussion going on towards reversing the ICO ban. We will be watching the space closely in the coming days.