South Korean won and Bitcoin

South Korean banks seek green light on crypto

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The Korea Federation of Banks (KFB) may request South Korea’s incoming presidential administration to approve local banks servicing cryptocurrencies, according to a leaked draft report.

See related article: South Korea’s largest financial group mulls crypto ETFs

Fast facts

  • KFB, the largest body representing domestic lenders, wrote in its report that banks should be permitted to pursue virtual asset businesses, including crypto trading platforms, e-wallets and custody services. 
  • The entry of credible banks can counter the lack of proper investor protection measures with existing crypto regulations being focused on anti-money laundering, the draft said. 
  • The first draft of the report, aimed to deliver key opinions on the banking sector to the Presidential Transition Committee, was distributed to local banks for review.
  • A representative of the KFB told Forkast the content in the leaked report is not finalized, stating that it is possible that banks may not push through with the request. 
  • South Korean laws limit local banks from operating cryptocurrency-related businesses. 
  • South Korean banks are currently participating in the local crypto economy as financial services partners to cryptocurrency exchanges, or by investing in custody services.

See related article: South Korean banks find workaround to cash in on crypto services

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