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‘Crypto Crisis Summit’ in South Korea – as No Ministry Wants to Take Charge

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Crypto policy has been placed at the top of the government’s agenda in South Korea – where ministries are eager to pass the buck on crypto-related matters, a “crisis” meeting involving the nation’s most powerful lawmakers has been held and new legislation is set to be put before the country’s parliament, the National Assembly.

Per SBS, a “crisis summit” was held over the weekend at Prime Minister Kim Bu-gyeom’s office on the subject of crypto regulation. In attendance were the Leader of the ruling Democratic Party Song Young-gil, Yoo Young-min, the Secretary of the Office of the Blue House (the Presidential office) and the Prime Minister himself.

However, it appears that the high-ranking politicians have a thorny problem on their hands: The media outlet quoted an unnamed government official as stating:

“Most ministries do not want to take charge of the problem [of crypto regulation]. […] A solution will emerge only after the ministries’ responsibilities have been spelled out.”

SBS added that some 10 ministries currently have some say over crypto policy formation – although a recently unveiled private members’ bill has suggested forming a central controlling body to take charge of all crypto-related matters.

And the crisis summit attendees also reviewed all of the existing private members’ bills put before the National Assembly, in an attempt to pick out possibly promising draft legislation.

The government has pledged to intervene in what it has labeled an “overheated” crypto market, but the matter has been complicated by a massive backlash among younger crypto holders – who are also outraged by the government’s tax plans.

Opposition politicians have also been piling on the pressure with highly critical statements on the matter. One leader equated the government to “gangsters” on the matter, while others said Seoul had “betrayed” young crypto-keen citizens.

The crisis-summit officials are likely to have examined new proposals for a further private members’ bill, slated to roll out on May 18, from Kim Byung-wook, a Democratic Party MP and a member of the National Assembly’s Political Affairs Committee.

Per Donga, Kim Byung-wook claims that his proposed measures would help nurture the blockchain and crypto industries – but would also seek to impose “strict measures” to tackle “unfair” crypto market practices.

The MP’s draft measures also include creating a registration system for crypto industry operators and punishing market manipulation-related offenses with jail sentences of up to three years. The bill will also propose amending legislation to make exchanges liable to pay damages in instances where there have been delays in meeting customers’ deposit and withdrawal requests.
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