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South Korea Cryptocurrency Exchange Revenue Rises 88 Times


The commission-related sales of South Korean cryptocurrency exchanges have increased by about 88 times last year compared to the previous year, a report said.

South Korea's Yonhap news agency published government data collected by Rep. Park Kwang-on of the ruling Democratic Party.

According to it, total commission-related sales of around 30 cryptocurrency exchange operators in the country are estimated to have reached 700 billion won ($652 million) at the end of last year.

The overwhelming increase is compared to overall cryptocurrency sale worth 8 billion won, estimated in 2016.

The data collected by the South Korean lawmaker was estimated on the basis of sales of commissions and the local price of bitcoin released by each operator.

South Korea has four major cryptocurrency exchanges: Upbit, Bithumb, Coinone, and Korbit. With a market share of 52.9 percent, Upbit is the largest among them.

Promoted by Internet major Kakao Corp., Upbit is estimated to have collected 194.3 billion won ($180 million) in commission sales last year.

The South Korean authorities are mulling several regulatory actions to control the crypto frenzy that has hit Asia's fourth-largest economy, which has also emerged as the world's second-largest market for cryptocurrency.

The government, which had considered extreme measures including an outright ban of crypto currency trading and closing down crypto exchanges, seems to have eased the hardline approach recently.

The regulators are reportedly considering a licensing system and tax for cryptocurrency exchanges as well as crypto trading.

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