National Assembly Discusses ICO Ban and ‘Blockchain Island’

Lawmakers in South Korea began discussing cryptocurrency once more Monday, August 20, in a meeting focusing on ending the country’s ICO ban, as well as other topics, Business Korea reports.

Coming amid considerable attention on both cryptocurrency and blockchain propagation from Seoul, the National Assembly meeting saw participation from government ministries including the Ministry of Science and Information and Communications Technology (ICT).

In addition to debating reallowing initial coin offerings (ICOs) to operate in the country, the parties involved are also keen to press ahead with the creation of South Korea’s own ‘Blockchain island.’

Centered on the Jeju Island resort, plans for a “special zone for global blockchain and cryptocurrencies” echo the trajectory adopted by Malta in recent months.

“…Discussions to allow ICOs are expected to gain momentum along with preparations of investor protection measures and organization of a task force to establish order in cryptocurrency trading,” Business Korea writes, adding it was first necessary to “clarify the legal definition of cryptocurrencies” before such a step could occur.

“The South Korean government prohibited all types of ICO in September last year and has come up with no related policy since then,” the publication quoted an “industry insider” as commenting.

“The entire industry is paying much attention to how its stance will change through various discussions in the National Assembly.”

Tuesday meanwhile will see a policy discussion on blockchain’s role in the political party structure.

Earlier this month, the ICT Ministry announced the next round of its intensive youth training initiative focussing on blockchain and other economic spheres, while government investment in areas including blockchain in 2019 will likely top $4.4 billion.

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