A South Korean government commission has advised the government to list bitcoin on Korea Exchange and green-light financial institutions to launch crypto products, including Bitcoin derivatives, Business Korea reports.
The 4th Industrial Revolution Commission, created under the Presidential Office, released a paper outlining policy recommendations for the government, such as classifying both cryptocurrencies and virtual currencies as “crypto assets,” and giving financial institutions the chance to develop crypto technology.
"Participants in the traditional capital market such as securities firms and banks should develop and introduce domestic custody solutions to handle crypto assets so that the Korean crypto-asset custody market will not depend on foreign countries," it said.
In part, the government’s taking a “if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em” attitude towards crypto. "As of May 2019, daily crypto-asset trade hit more than 80 trillion won (about US$69 billion) in the world, so it is no longer possible to stop crypto-asset trade,” it wrote.
As such, "The Korean government has to gradually allow institutional investors to deal in crypto assets and promote over the counter (OTC) desks dedicated to institutional investors’ trade."
In a previous report, issued in October, the Presidential Commission was banging the same drum. “The government should secure legal status for crypto assets as soon as possible, and seek tax and accounting measures for them,” the committee said.
The Commission’s advice backfired late last month when the government levied a $70 million tax bill on crypto exchange Bithumb. Bithumb bit back, and a day later the government said it was considering revising the bill.