Central Bank in Thailand Bans Bank from cryptocurrency

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13 Feb 2018, 18:55


Thailand’s central bank said on Monday it had asked financial institutions not to get involved in cryptocurrency transactions for fear of possible problems from the unregulated trading.

Bank of Thailand issued a circular today asking the financial institutions to refrain from doing any business involving cryptocurrencies, as their suspicions of cryptocurrencies grow into a real fear of the possible problems with trading in an unregulated market.
Banks were also asked not to advise customers on crypto investment or trading, and to ban clients from using credit cards for crypto purchases. Several large banks globally have already instituted a similar ban of credit card purchases of crypto last week, as the crypto markets took a dip to new multi-month record lows.

In explaining their reasoning for the ban on banks’ dealing with crypto, The Bank of Thailand cited concerns over digital currencies being used for illegal activities, such as money laundering or terrorist activities, and noted that cryptocurrencies are not legal tender in the country.

Mr. Tantivorawong said: “The government will not ban cryptocurrency trading. A regulatory framework to govern digital currencies will become clearer within a month.
“After a recent discussion, related agencies agreed that regulators cannot stop the use of virtual currencies but will have to regulate and control them in an appropriate manner,” he added.

Moreover, the Finance Minister also indicated that the Bank of Thailand is not the appropriate institution to regulate cryptocurrencies, as it does not recognize cryptocurrencies as legal tender. According to Mr. Tantivorawong, the securities watchdog Thai Securities and Exchange Commission (TSEC) is the appropriate authority to oversee cryptocurrencies in Thailand.
However, with the recent decision taken by the Bank of Thailand, it seems the country is set to put a full ban on digital currencies rather than imposing regulations.

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