Cryptocurrencies slowly but surely gain popularity in a number of developing countries. As of today, Bitcoin and other digital coins were legalized and generally accepted in the USA, Canada, Australia and some countries of the European Union. Other states have not clearly defined the legality of digital currencies, preferring to take a wait-and-see position instead.
Taiwan officially referred to as the Republic of China has usually held a neutral position on whether to regulate cryptocurrencies or still maintain a free market. The liberalization of the crypto industry could potentially enhance the local financial technology sector as Taiwan has a historically strong base in the high-tech sphere. It is one of the main reasons why we hear some curious ICO news today regarding the ROC.
Despite the raised e-currency awareness, some negative thoughts on the application of crypto started to appear in 2015. Back then, Tseng Ming-Chung, holding the position of the chairperson of the Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC), called digital currency illegal, paying specific negative attention to crypto ATMs.
However, when Wellington Koo took his place in September 2017, he has demonstrated the intentions towards pursuing crypto-positive policy. A month later, Koo addressed the Parliament with a message implying that Taiwan should follow the example of Japan, which provides licenses to cryptocurrency exchanges, instead of following the path of South Korea and China. The banks along with other financial institutions in these countries are prohibited from trading or holding BTC or any other digital coins.
As one of the prerequisites for the establishment of its first ICO, Taiwan – more specifically, FSC regulatory organization – adopted the “Act on Financial Technology Innovations and Experiments” in late December 2017. This event endowed startups with galore of opportunities to try out different innovations in the financial services area. However, the Financial Supervisory Commission of ROC controlled them all.
In the winter of 2018, it was announced that financial authorities of Taiwan would consider the introduction of blockchain technologies for their internal needs. Thus, already in April 2018 government of Taiwan proclaimed the beginning of crypto-industry regulations development. It was based on existing methods of the Anti-Money Laundering office and was aimed at managing the crypto situation in the country. In addition, the Taiwan Crypto Blockchain Self-Regulatory Organization was created. Soon enough the world was going to learn about ICO draft of Taiwan.
In midsummer 2018, the capital city of the Republic of China, Taipei, hosted the Blockchain Asia Summit. During this event, Wellington Koo pronounced that FSC was going to support the advancement of blockchain industry.
On 23rd of October, 2018 it became clear that the ROC government planned to issue draft ICO regulation rules. There is a lot of various crypto ICO news currently that became a reason for such a decision.
Not that long ago, at the beginning of November, the Legislative Yuan has approved certain amendments to the “Money Laundering Control Act” and the “Terrorist Financing Prevention Law." According to the adopted adjustments, the users of crypto platforms in Taiwan cannot be anonymous. Any bank transfers with a hidden user identity are allowed to be rejected.
In the light of recent Taiwan crypto ICO news, the enthusiastic supporters of electronic currency still hope that the government will realize the rich potential of BC technology and digital money. Of course, it would require the modification of existing juridical rules. However, cryptocurrency admirers are in the minority. It is still almost impossible to open a Bitcoin account in Taiwanese banks – unfortunately, such changes do not happen that fast.
Yet, it is entirely legal to exchange digital assets, and a lot of startups based on financial technologies continue to emerge. Another positive thing is Wellington Koo’s confidence about the mild regulatory policy of FSC towards crypto coins.
Even taking into consideration the latest ICO news from Taiwan, the atmosphere in the local e-currency industry remains tense.