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Thai SEC Plans to Tighten Regulations for Crypto Companies

Thailand’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) plans to introduce stricter regulations for crypto firms. Bloomberg reported on July 22, citing the SEC’s Secretary-General Ruenvadee Suwanmongkol. The decision to introduce sterner regulations comes after the recent crypto market downturn saw retail investors incur massive losses.

According to Suwanmongkol:

The extreme volatility of digital-asset prices has spurred the urgent need for improved supervision. Our main focus will be to provide more protection for small investors, some of whom are putting most of their savings into these assets.

To address this problem, the SEC aims to amend existing regulations, most of which got approval in 2018. Suwanmongkol said the regulator proposes introducing stricter qualifications for managing and licensing crypto custodians. However, she did not share more details about the proposed requirements.

This news comes after Zipmex, a Thai-based crypto exchange, suspended withdrawals earlier this week. Zipmex blamed the hitch on market volatility, which caused some of its key business partners financial problems.

Assuring the Thai population that the SEC is working to protect crypto adopters, Suwanmongkol said Zipmex’s case is isolated. She added that Thailand’s digital asset sector is sound, and the assets of investors that use licensed platforms are safe. 

Thailand Already Has Stringent Crypto Regulations

Notably, the Thai SEC already has strict crypto regulations in place. In March, the watchdog announced plans to limit crypto use in payments. Specifically, the regulator barred the use of crypto in payments starting April 1. In so doing, the SEC only allowed Thai citizens to trade crypto as assets on licensed platforms.

Additionally, the SEC gave crypto service providers 30 days to comply with the new rules after implementation.

These stern regulations saw crypto exchange Huobi Thailand shut down operations on July 1. The SEC canceled the exchange’s license on May 17, citing failure to comply with local regulations.

While the SEC’s actions seek to guarantee the safety of customer assets, experts believe the strict regulations will stifle growth.

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Nares Laopannarai, the Secretary General of the Thai Digital Asset Association, previously said:

Let me put it this way, I think the tight regulations are quite unfriendly to crypto trade and limit the growth of crypto trading to less than we expected.

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