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Thailand Grants Digital Asset Business Licenses To Four Firms

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The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of Thailand announced that the country's Ministry of Finance granted digital asset business licenses to four operators, but denied it to two operators. The four licenses were issued by the finance ministry following the recommendation of the SEC Board.

Digital asset businesses in Thailand are regulated under the Emergency Degree on Digital Asset Businesses B.E. 2561 (2018).

Legal framework for cryptocurrencies in the country was introduced in May 2018, defining such currencies as digital assets and digital tokens, and bringing them under the jurisdiction of the Thai SEC.

Three of the applicants namely Bitcoin Exchange Co., Ltd. (BX) (bx.in.th), Bitkub Online Co., Ltd. (BITKUB) (bitkub.com), and Satang Corp. (Satang Pro) (satang.pro) have been granted a license to operate as digital asset exchanges, while Coins TH Co., Ltd. (Coins.co.th) was granted license to operate as a cryptocurrency broker and dealer.

The two rejected applicants, Cash2coin Co., Ltd. (cash2coins.com) and Southeast Asia Digital Exchange Co., Ltd. (SEADEX) (seadex.io), failed to meet the approval criteria regarding important work systems. The sufficiency of their IT security and cyber security systems also could not be verified.

The two business were operating until now by virtue of the Transitional Provisions of the Emergency Decree on Digital Asset Businesses B.E. 2561 (2018), but have now become subject to business cessation.

However, the Ministry of Finance is allowing both companies to continue their business operation until January 14, 2019 to ensure proper proceeding of related matters including notification to the clients regarding asset refunds or asset transfers to other digital asset operators according to the clients' order.

Meanwhile, the rejected businesses can apply again for a digital asset business license in the future after they meet the criteria set by the Thai SEC.

The application of one of the total seven operators is still under consideration because there has been a change of company executives, which is material information for the consideration of the application.

All the seven applicants have until now been operating digital asset businesses by virtue of the Transitional Provisions of the Emergency Degree on Digital Asset Businesses B.E. 2561 (2018).

The latest approval follows a group of seven crypto businesses that were granted approval in mid-August to conduct cryptocurrency operations. Five of them were to operate legal cryptocurrency exchanges, while two of them were to operate as cryptocurrency dealers.

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