May 15, 2018 / 8:58 AM / 4 months ago

Thailand to issue rules on cryptocurrency by end-June: SEC chief

BANGKOK (Reuters) - Thailand’s securities and exchange commission expects to issue regulations on cryptocurrencies and initial coin offerings by the end of June after holding a public hearing, the SEC chief said on Tuesday.

Offerings of digital tokens will not be allowed until the regulations are announced, Rapee Sucharitakul, SEC secretary-general, told reporters.

The SEC has the authority to regulate digital assets, according to a decree which took effect on Monday. The decree requires sellers and operators of such assets to register with the SEC within 90 days.

The public hearing will take a 2-3 weeks because investments in digital tokens are complicated and carry high risks, Rapee said.

The finance ministry will impose a 15-percent withholding tax on gains from digital tokens and cryptocurrency trade, Finance Minister Apisak Tantivorawong said in March.

There will also be a 7-percent value-added tax, but general investors will be exempted, he said.

The Bank of Thailand will wait for the SEC - the primary regulator - to announce other regulations before taking action, according to Assistant BOT Governor Chantavarn Sucharitakul.

In February, the central bank asked financial institutions not to get involved in cryptocurrency transactions for fear of possible problems.

Reporting by Orathai Sriring and Kitiphong Thaichareon; Editing by Kim Coghill

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