Nick Chong · 5 hours ago · 2 min read
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South Korea: ICOs and Blockchain Top Priority for Ongoing ‘Extraordinary’ Meeting
The South Korean National Assembly has kickstarted an “extraordinary” meeting for discussing ICO regulation, cryptocurrency and blockchain frameworks, as well as other steps to support optimal growth of the digital assets sector, Business Korea reported.
Korea’s Cryptocurrency Push
The Korean government is swiftly taking steps in the cryptocurrency sector as it looks to bolster its economy and lead blockchain innovation. The so-called “extraordinary” assembly came into order after Jeju Island Governor Won Hee-ryong pushed for an expedited meeting to discuss the immediate regulatory set up of the cryptocurrency sector.
As per Korean law, the extraordinary session cannot run for more than 30 days, signifying cryptocurrency regulations for Korea’s law books can be expected before the end of September.
The report also stated that relevant standing committees and lawmakers from all political parties should align to create regulations and discuss steps to promote the local blockchain sector while establishing ICO guidelines.
Notably, the extraordinary meeting arrives at a time when Korean authorities have fast-tracked the regulatory process for the cryptocurrency market, with several draft bills expected to be released soon.
The first few days of the extraordinary session has seen significant action. Lawmakers have reportedly contacted officials from the Ministry of Information and Communications Technology to prepare investor protection guidelines about ICO investing.
Additionally, the ministry will draft an audit report detailing the preparedness of Korean digital asset exchanges against hackers and other security threats, keeping in mind the billions of dollars lost to nefarious acts in 2018 alone.
The report notes a cryptocurrency trading taskforce is already in the works to establish order. In this regard, the team is also tasked with legally defining cryptocurrencies before working on ICO regulations.
Opposition and Independent Parties Pave Path
Meanwhile, Korea’s minor opposition, the Bareunmirae Party, held an internal policy discussion, Aug. 21. The forward-thinking political party believes in an “Industry 4.0” spearheaded by the likes of IoT, artificial intelligence and blockchain technologies, and would explore frameworks of a blockchain-based political party in future–focusing on decentralized governance and efficient decisionmaking.
The party is holding meetings on ICO regulations as well and is led by several industrialists and Korean academicians.
Giving insight into the meetings, an anonymous industry person told Business Korea:
“The South Korean government prohibited all types of ICO in September last year and has come up with no related policy since then. The entire industry is paying much attention to how its stance will change through various discussions in the National Assembly.”
The Korean extraordinary session also provides Hee-ryong a platform to present his case for Jeju Island, which includes making the independent district a hotbed for the world’s token issuers classified as a special economic zone for cryptocurrencies, as previously reported by CryptoSlate.