Thailand to regulate cryptocurrency as payment method

Thailand’s financial authorities have unveiled a plan to issue regulations that would “limit the widespread adoption of digital assets as a means of payment for goods and services” in a bid to protect the country of 70 million people.

Fast facts

  • Thailand’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Ministry of Finance (MOF) and The Bank of Thailand (BOT) said in a joint press release that cryptocurrency poses risks to consumers and businesses through price volatility, cybertheft, personal data leakage and money laundering.
  • “Therefore, clear supervision of such activity is needed,” said Sethaput Suthiwartnarueput, Governor of the Bank of Thailand. “However, technologies and digital assets that do not pose such risks should be supported with appropriate regulatory frameworks to drive innovation and further benefit for the public.”
  • Thailand is part of a growing wave of countries — including China, India, South Korea and Singapore — that are grappling with how to regulate crypto as the asset class rises in popularity.
  • The Thai SEC says it welcomes public comments and suggestions on the new crypto guidelines until Feb. 8.
  • Thailand is also considering levying a 15% tax on trading digital assets, and the government will determine the details of its crypto tax plan by the end of this month, Finance Minister Arkhom Termpittayapaisith said.
  • Meanwhile, Thailand’s ruling party member of parliament Watanya Wongopasi and other financial experts asked the Excise Department to carefully consider the potential impact on the market — such as decreased market liquidity possibly thwarting foreign investments — before implementing the crypto tax plan.