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March 24, 2022updated 28 Mar 2022 11:11am

Thailand bans use of cryptocurrencies for payments

Thailand is set to prohibit the use of cryptocurrencies, including bitcoin, as a medium of payment for goods and services in the country, starting next month.

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of Thailand banned businesses, including cryptocurrency exchanges, from accepting payments in cryptocurrencies under the new regulation.

The SEC’s order follows its earlier discussions with the Bank of Thailand (BOT) about the advantages and risks of digital assets.

According to the regulator, the move will ensure the country’s financial stability and economy and avoid risks to businesses and individuals, including loss of value, personal data leakage as well as money laundering.

Under the new regulation, digital asset business operators are barred from advertising, soliciting, or setting up systems for paying for goods and services using cryptocurrencies.

It also instructs digital asset business operators to take action on customers who use accounts opened for trading digital assets for paying for goods and services.

The SEC said: “The creation of a unit of account or a unit of pricing other than the Thai baht will be the cost of the economic activities of people and businesses.

“This will also reduce the BOT’s ability to maintain financial conditions in accordance with the economic conditions in each period. In addition, if there is a liquidity crisis in the country, the BOT will not be able to provide liquidity assistance to various financial institutions in other forms other than Thai baht.”

The news comes as several countries around the globe are seeking to either ban or regulate cryptocurrencies in a bid to shield their financial system from potential risks.

This January, The Monetary Authority of Singapore issued a new set of guidelines on digital payment token services to the public.

Spain’s National Securities Market Commission (CNMV) also released a circular on advertising crypto investments.

In December 2021, it was reported that India is planning to ban the trading of most cryptocurrencies and initiate the adoption of a central bank digital currency (CBDC) in the country.

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