Solidifying its stance against cryptocurrency like Bitcoin, the Bank of Thailand declared yesterday that it does not support the use of cryptocurrency as a means of payment, likening crypto transactions to “barter trade” as the bank does not consider crypto legal tender.

Fast facts

  • Siritida Panomwon Na Ayudhya, assistant governor of payment systems policy for the bank, said the Bank of Thailand is continuously monitoring the developments of digital assets and warned that both parties in cryptocurrency transactions face the risk of price volatility, cyber theft and money laundering.
  • The Bank of Thailand also warned that should digital assets gain widespread use, the bank would coordinate with the country’s Securities and Exchange Commission to take measures to ensure that cryptocurrency does not “pose extensive risks to the general public or the economic and financial system.”
  • In March, the central bank declared the baht-denominated stablecoin THT on the Terra network to be illegal. This could cause “fragmentation to the Thai currency system should THT or other similar stablecoins come to replace, substitute or compete with Baht issued by the BOT,” the Bank of Thailand said at the time.
  • The Bank of Thailand is currently exploring a central bank digital currency in the country, and a pilot is expected to be launched in 2022.