The chief of South Korea’s main finance sector regulator has spoken out again against banks that have requested exemptions from anti-money laundering compliance rules in their contracts with cryptocurrency exchanges.

Fast facts

  • Eun Sung-soo, the chairman of the Financial Services Commission said yesterday: “Banks should use their own judgement to make decisions and apply for [contracts with exchanges], and the Financial Intelligence Unit will review them according to standards,” implying that compliance is a simple process with no exceptions. He also told banks to stop blaming the FSC for making them responsible for AML, saying that verifying exchanges “is the job of the bank.”
  • Cryptocurrency exchanges in South Korea are required to obtain bank contracts to provide users with real-name accounts. Any exchange that fails to do so after Sept. 24 will be forced to shut down.
  • Since the FSC chairman’s initial comments on AML compliance, banks have become more unwilling to partner with crypto exchanges. Only four exchanges — Upbit, Bithumb, CoinOne and Korbit — among around 60 have acquired bank contracts and are expected to continue trading after September.