South Korea’s Woori and Shinhan banks have simply introduced their intention to introduce “crypto-asset providers”. That signifies that 4 of the nation’s high 5 banks, holding a mixed worth of greater than $1.2 trillion in belongings, are actually poised to introduce crypto providers.
Every of the banks goals to carry and handle cryptocurrencies for shoppers. Each Shinhan and Woori introduced their plans in direct response to the amended Particular Monetary Transactions Data Act which can change laws round crypto belongings, coming into power subsequent yr.
Shinhan financial institution beforehand introduced plans for crypto storage in 2017, however these plans have been thwarted by the federal government in January 2018.
The NH Nonghyup Financial institution and Kookmin Financial institution have already coordinated blockchain groups to implement crypto custodial options, with Nonghyup probably the most superior and hoping to launch providers for “institutional buyers” within the coming months.
Too little, too late?
Blockchain consultants within the nation have voiced considerations that these steps are “too little, too late” citing American establishments which might be effectively forward of South Korea’s banking sector. The pinnacle of the Blockchain Analysis Heart at Dongguk College Park Sung-joon stated he was “nervous” that the nation’s monetary “competitiveness” may very well be in jeopardy consequently:
“Different international locations are shifting in a short time on this regard. However there’s nonetheless no authorized system in place in South Korea, so progress is slower than anticipated.”
With out “institutional assist”, he steered that this push for crypto custody may not eventuate into widespread integration.
Korea loves crypto
Though the finance sector has been criticized for its gradual uptake on blockchain expertise, different industries have been quicker to combine it into their options. Greater than 1 million individuals have adopted a brand new blockchain-based digital driver’s license app after solely three months. One in every of South Korea’s greatest banks KEB Hana Financial institution has partnered with the Korea Expressway Company to implement a blockchain-based toll system for the nation’s highways.
And this week information emerged Seongnam’s fee program can be expanded by issuing new digital reward certificates whereas beachgoers in Busan will be capable of pay for providers with Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH).
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