Sometime this week in Korea, the Korean Bar Association embarked on a public campaign for the government to pass a number of cryptocurrency-related laws. The Korean Bar Association clearly suggests that regulation for cryptocurrency exchanges, initial coin offerings, domestic and foreign crypto transactions, and cryptocurrency funds. The members of the Korean Bar Association are lawyers in the country and their membership is obligatory.
This past Thursday (November 8th), the Korean Bar Association campaigned for the government “to quickly establish a legal framework to help develop the blockchain-based virtual currency industry and protect investors,” as reported by a news outlet called Reuters.
The publication added, “It is rare for the Korean Bar Association, membership of which is mandatory for all local lawyers, to campaign publicly for specific technological or business interest groups.”
During a press conference which took place at the National Assembly that same Thursday, president of the Korean Bar Association, Kim Hyun was cited stating “We urge the government to break away from negative perceptions and hesitation, and draw up bills to help develop the blockchain industry and prevent side effects involving cryptocurrencies.”
As we speak, the government of Korea is working on the legal framework for initial coin offerings (ICOs) that it banned in September last year “without disclosing legal grounds,” as reported by News1.
The publication also noted that “the Korean Bar Association specifically proposed the direction of regulating cryptocurrency trading sites, ICOs, domestic and foreign cryptocurrency fund products.”
A publication in Korea called Chosun detailed that the group urges the government to adopt clear legal legislation related to crypto exchanges to prevent activities such as wash trading, insider trading, and money laundering. Furthermore, instead of prohibiting investments in cryptocurrencies, the group proposes permitting certain types of organizations with expertise and qualifications to trade them. The association claimed that “even in the United States, where regulations on securities are strict, the law permits fund operations using cryptocurrencies as an underlying asset and futures trading.”
When it comes to ICOs, the association suggests applying the current securities laws like the Capital Markets Act or Financial Investment Business Act to security tokens, covering both domestic and foreign ICOs entering the Korean market.
Also, the group says the country’s Financial Services Commission (FSC) should “specify in advance the obligation to submit related documents such as a whitepaper” for ICOs of foreign companies entering the domestic market. On Wednesday (November 7th) FSC Vice Chairman Kim Yong-beom noted that “the financial authorities will release the results of the actual initial coin offering situation this month.”