Korean Parliament Proposes to Allow ICOs - Report

The recommendation seeks to cancel the current ban on coin offerings.

by Kalina Tekelieva
30 May • 2 min
In Regulation

South Korea’s National Assembly has proposed to lift the ban on initial coin offerings (ICOs) in the country, local news publication Business Korea wrote today without disclosing its sources.

Reports about Korea planning to ease restrictions on ICOs have been circulating through the media space ever since the government decided to prohibit domestic blockchain fundraising in September 2017 in an effort to handle cryptocurrency speculations and protect investors. However, there have been signals pointing to a potential legislation shift.

At the beginning of May, the Korea Times wrote that lawmakers are working on a draft bill that will cancel the ICO ban. The publication quoted Rep. Hong Eui-rak of the ruling Democratic Party of Korea as saying that the bill will legalize coin offerings under governmental supervision.

According to Business Korea’s report from Tuesday, the legislature called for allowing ICOs because the government has failed to develop guidelines for blockchain funding rounds. As a consequence, local blockchain firms have to pay unnecessary expenses as they go to more ICO-friendly countries like Singapore and Switzerland to raise funds in coin offerings.

A committee under the National Assembly accused the Korean government of neglecting its duties in light of the expansion of the blockchain sector, the news outlet wrote. The committee advocated for the setting up of government systems focused on blockchain policy and provision of industrial support.

If the proposal is enforced, ICOs will be allowed on condition that they adhere to all investor protection provisions.

So far, no official comments on the matter have come from Korean authorities in relation to Business Korea’s report.