Thailand to Legitimize First ICO ‘Portal’ via New Regulation, Says SEC Head

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Thailand’s securities regulator will clear “at least one” Initial Coin Offering (ICO) “portal” to operate legally in November, local daily news outlet Bangkok Post reported Nov. 8.

Speaking to the publication, Rapee Sucharitakul, secretary general of the Thai Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) said that ICOs themselves could also start seeing official approval to serve Thai markets as soon as December.

“At least one ICO portal will be certified in November, then we can approve each ICO offering, which might start in December,” he said.

The confirmation marks the closing stages of Thailand’s final push to formalize cryptocurrency markets, which began with the issuance of a royal decree in May.

Governing all forms of cryptocurrency entities from ICOs to exchanges and broader “digital asset operators,” the legislation demands the SEC vet those wishing to operate in Thailand.

Rapee added a further five such “operators” were currently under consideration by the Finance Ministry.

During the application process, all will continue to operate as normal, Bangkok Post notes, having submitted their original applications within a specified 90-day cooling-off period following the issuance of the May decree.

Once the certification process is in place, however, Rapee signalled that the SEC would remain risk-averse to market entrants.

“We have always warned investors against being persuaded to invest in ICO offerings because they could be scams or they might not have sufficient liquidity to trade,” he added, continuing warnings made last month.

Speaking at the Counter-Terrorism Financing Summit this week, Thailand’s Deputy Prime Minister urged that additional measures be introduced both domestically and internationally to the pending regulatory framework, in order to keep up with new tactics and threats to consumer security.

Earlier this week, on Nov. 5, the country’s Revenue Department revealed plans to use blockchain and maсhine learning to verify the validity of taxes paid and to speed up the tax refund process.