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Asia-Pacific

161 articles

August 2022

Indonesia’s biggest tech firm buys local crypto exchange

Indonesia’s biggest tech firm GoTo Gojek Tokopedia (GOTO) has forayed into the cryptocurrency market with the purchase of local crypto exchange Kripto Maksima Koin for US$8.38 million. See related article: Indonesia’s wholesale CBDC to be ready for bank use by year end: report Fast facts GoTo has acquired 100% of Kripto Maksima Koin shares for […]

Temasek to lead US$100M funding round in Animoca Brands: report

Singapore state-backed fund is leading a US$100 million funding round into Hong Kong-based blockchain and game venture Animoca Brands, Bloomberg reported.  See related article: Singapore’s Temasek says doesn’t own Bitcoin, but prepping for tokenized assets Fast facts Temasek will make the investment through convertible bonds, according to unnamed sources cited by Bloomberg. Temasek has been […]

Crypto lender Hodlnaut placed under creditor protection by Singapore court

Singapore-based crypto lender Hodlnaut has been placed under Interim Judicial Management (IJM), a form of creditor protection, and will now be managed and controlled by interim judicial managers appointed by court order. See related article: Singapore’s central bank says cryptocurrencies have ‘no fundamental value’ Fast facts Hodlnaut said its legal representatives attended the IJM hearing […]

Binance Australia strengthens user protection: report

Binance Australia is tightening its sign-up process for new users, as part of renewed efforts to protect users considered most vulnerable to scams and cyber attacks, according to a report by Binance Australia. See related article: Binance to suspend ETH deposits, withdrawals during “The Merge” Fast facts According to the report, the company’s research and […]

India’s CoinDCX says it’s hiring to prepare for DeFi expansion

Despite the Indian government’s hostility towards cryptocurrencies, the CoinDCX exchange says more traditional financial products will shift to DeFi platforms.

Operating profit at Upbit parent Dunamu drops 70%

Dunamu, the owner of South Korea’s leading cryptocurrency exchange Upbit, reported an operating profit of 566.1 billion Korean won (about US$419 million) for the first half of this year, a 70% decrease compared to the same period last year. See related article: Dunamu denies making US$100 million off of LUNA Fast facts Dunamu’s consolidated operating […]

S.Korea’s internet-only KakaoBank partners with crypto exchange Coinone

South Korea’s internet-only bank KakaoBank has signed a contract with local cryptocurrency exchange Coinone to provide withdrawal and deposit accounts to investors under their real names, per local regulations. See related article: South Korea’s crypto crackdown: What you need to know Fast facts While the partnership deal has been settled, it has not been announced […]

Singapore’s Crypto Dance; Women in Web3

Welcome to The Daily Forkast – August 29, 2022 – presented by Joel Flynn. Coming up on today’s show: Crypto clarity from Singapore’s central bank. Forkast and NEAR Foundation initiative champions women in Web3. We’ll have more on those stories — and other news shaping the cryptocurrency and blockchain world — in this episode of […]

Singapore’s MAS says needs to do better job explaining crypto policy

The city-state hosted a seminar with a title that it hopes sums up its crypto approach: “Yes to digital asset innovation, No to cryptocurrency speculation.”

S.Korea’s science ministry announces ethical principles for the metaverse

South Korea’s Ministry of Science and ICT (MSIT) has recently unveiled the first draft of core ethical principles that are fundamental for growing and participating in the metaverse. See related article: South Korea places $185M bet on the metaverse Fast facts The science ministry’s three values for the metaverse participants are an intact self-identity, safe […]

Crypto regulation in focus

Crypto experts weigh in on the direction crypto regulation is headed in APAC and beyond.

Thailand’s SCBX scraps plan to buy 51% stake in crypto exchange Bitkub

Thailand’s oldest lender SCBX Pcl has announced it is withdrawing from an earlier decision to purchase a 51% stake in the crypto exchange Bitkub for US$500 million, citing regulatory issues. See related article: Thailand’s central bank to get more power in crypto regulation overhaul: report Fast facts In a statement addressed to the Stock Exchange […]

Siloed regulatory efforts unlikely to help bring oversight to highly decentralized crypto industry

Panelists speaking at Forkast’s recently live-streamed event “Crypto Rising: The future of crypto regulation: APAC and Beyond,” co-hosted by Crypto Council for Innovation (CCI), said there need to be international cooperation among regulators from around the world to make any oversight of the crypto industry effective.

Binance to help S. Korea’s Busan build first city-backed exchange

Global crypto exchange Binance and the city of Busan in South Korea announced a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on Friday to promote the growth of the blockchain ecosystem in the city and the development of the Busan Digital Asset Exchange. See related article: Issue tokens later for growth, not for initial fundraising, advises Binance chief […]

India financial crime-fighters search CoinSwitch crypto exchange

India’s Enforcement Directorate (ED) has searched five premises connected with cryptocurrency company CoinSwitch on alleged money laundering charges, according to a media report. See related article: India’s WazirX says it has no-tolerance policy on illegal activities Fast facts The country’s central agency fighting financial crime conducted searches at residences of CoinSwitch directors and the official […]

Animoca Brand’s Japan subsidiary raises US$45 Mln to invest in NFT

Animoca Brands KK, the Japanese unit of Hong Kong blockchain investment firm Animoca Brands, Friday said it raised US$45 million from the world’s second-largest financial group Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG), and parent Animoca Brands. See related article: Japan’s Mitsubishi UFJ to issue yen-pegged stablecoin: report Fast facts MUFG and Animoca Brands each invested US$22.5 […]

Huobi-incubated Chinese NFT platform iBox ends international operations

Its operations in mainland China are continuing as normal.

Crypto ATM Bitcoin Depot unveils US$885 mln SPAC listing plans

Bitcoin Depot has announced its backdoor listing plans on the Nasdaq by the first quarter of 2023 via a merger with special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) GSR II Meteora at an estimated equity value of US$885 million, the crypto ATM operator said in a statement. See related article: Bitcoin ATMs face existential threat in Hong […]

Huobi warning issued; Singapore’s blockchain aims

Huobi in hot water after being put on investor alert list. Meanwhile, we take a closer look into crypto regulation in Asia.

OSL Digital placed a ‘tokenized bond’ in July — what’s next for blockchain securities?

Financial instruments sold and traded on a public blockchain could be the next big thing, so Forkast caught up with OSL to hear about what’s planned.

Philippines central bank approves two more digital banks

A total of six digital banks are now allowed to operate in the Philippines after the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) issued Certificates of Authority to UnionDigital Bank, Inc. (UDB) and GoTyme Bank Corporation (GTYME). Read more: Philippine central bank governor says no plan to ban crypto BSP earlier authorized four digital banks namely Tonik […]

Tornado Cash storm; Australia plans crypto rules

The Tornado Cash bans have stirred the pot in the crypto markets. Meanwhile, Australia looks for new ways to regulate crypto.

More than half of Indian crypto investors want to increase investments: report

Over 50% of Indian crypto investors intend to increase their investments over the next six months as they view the asset class as a long-term investment rather than hype, according to a report by cryptocurrency exchange Kucoin.  See related article: Most Indian traders impacted by India’s crypto tax: survey Fast facts While 56% of crypto […]

Australia’s crypto industry split on Treasury’s ‘token mapping’ scheme

The Treasury Department says its plan for how to regulate cryptocurrencies is unlike anything else in the world, but the country’s crypto industry isn’t sure that’s a good thing.

S. Korea tax authority says crypto airdrops subject to gift tax: report

Virtual asset airdrops could be subject to gift taxes in South Korea, local publication Yonhap News Agency reported on Monday, citing tax authorities. See related article: S. Korea’s 20% crypto tax delayed by two more years Fast facts In response to a tax law interpretation inquiry, a government official said recipients of free virtual asset […]

India blockchain forum plans to chart future with governments, regulators

Stakeholders in India’s blockchain space have created a new forum with more than 40 influencers to liaise with governments and regulators for blockchain and Web 3.0 adoption in the country. See related article: India’s latest tax assault on crypto exchanges starts Friday Fast facts According to a local media report, India Blockchain Forum is setting […]

Australia to keep pace with crypto laws with “token mapping”

The Australian Treasury under the ruling Albanese Government will prioritize “token mapping” in 2022 to help regulations Down Under keep pace and adapt with the crypto sector.  See related article: Singapore’s MAS to further strengthen crypto regulations Fast facts “Token mapping”, the primary step in the government’s reform agenda, intends to identify the appropriate direction […]

Merge prep rush; Scams down, hacks up

CME prepares to launch ETH options as the merge gets closer, Meanwhile, a Chainalysis says crypto scams are down.

South Korea to block access to 16 unregistered crypto companies

The Korea Financial Intelligence Unit (KoFIU) has requested investigative authorities to block 16 unregistered foreign-based Virtual Asset Service Providers (VASPs) that reportedly targeted domestic consumers by offering services in Korean. See related article: South Korea’s all-encompassing crypto law is coming — what we know so far Fast facts According to a press release, these unregistered […]

Australians can now use crypto to buy gasoline, Krispy Kreme donuts

Australian consumers can use cryptocurrency to pay for gasoline and other goods — including Krispy Kreme donuts — at 175 OTR service stations through a partnership with Crypto.com and payment terminal provider DataMesh Group Pty Ltd. See related article: Crypto.com inks AU$27M deal with the Australian Football League Fast facts The service stations allow Crypto.com […]

Coinhako crypto exchange sees Asia expansion opportunity as rivals stumble

Cross currents: BlackRock Inc, the world’s biggest money manager, is talking about Bitcoin opportunities amid a market slump. Singapore’s Coinhako looks to have similar ideas.

Australian superannuation and institutions await clarity to invest in crypto

There’s growing interest from Australian self-managed super [retirement] funds (SMSF) to invest in crypto but are being let down by a lack of regulatory clarity, Caroline Bowler, chief executive officer of Australian exchange BTC Markets said at an industry panel on Wednesday. See related article: Australia’s Holon Global got ahead of BlackRock with funds shrugging […]

Shareholders ask Zipmex CEO to step down amid restructuring

The chief executive officer of troubled crypto exchange Zipmex is being asked to resign by shareholders and potential investors, citing Marcus Lim’s management decisions that led to a severe cash crunch, while the company was granted a three-month moratorium to try to restructure. See related article: Why Singapore may be the ideal place for companies […]

Crypto’s Institutional Boost

Crypto’s institutional boost is on the rise, meanwhile, Australia is proving to attract the crypto sector.

Huobi looks to sell stake that values exchange at US$3 bln, Bloomberg reports

Leon Li, the founder of China cryptocurrency exchange Huobi, is seeking to sell a 60% stake in the company that would value the business at US$3 billion, according to a Bloomberg News report that cited people familiar with the matter. See related article: Sam Bankman-Fried’s Voyager debt emerges; Celsius reshuffles board Fast facts See related […]

India authorities block crypto exchange Bitbns’ bank account

Indian crypto exchange Bitbns said on Thursday that withdrawals in Indian rupees (INR) have been delayed as law enforcement officers have blocked its bank account.  See related article: India authorities freeze Vauld exchange’s assets worth $46.5 mln Fast facts “If a cybercrime case is raised for say even an amount of 10,000 Indian rupees (US$125), […]

Philippine central bank halts crypto service provider applications for 3 years

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) slaps a moratorium on new virtual asset service provider (VASP) license applications starting Sept. 1.

Korea Blockchain Week points to games leading the way into a Web3 savvy world

Follow the money? Korea Blockchain Week concludes this weekend in Seoul and one of the overarching themes is enthusiasm for blockchain-based gaming as the key to opening up a Web3 world to a broader audience.

India authorities freeze Vauld exchange’s assets worth $46.5 mln

India’s Enforcement Directorate (ED), the country’s economic crime unit, on Thursday froze 3.70 billion rupees (US$46.5 million) in assets at the struggling cryptocurrency exchange Vauld, local media reported citing unnamed sources. See related article: India crypto traders try to dodge fallout from WazirX woes, spat with Binance Fast facts The move comes days after the […]

Indian authorities probe alleged $125 mln money laundering cases involving crypto, report says

India’s Enforcement Directorate is investigating at least 10 cryptocurrency exchanges for alleged money laundering, according to The Economic Times

Diving into Web3 at Korea Blockchain Week

Today’s special episode of The Daily Forkast, we take a deeper on location in Seoul, at the sold-out Korea Blockchain Week.

South Korea’s top financial regulator to accelerate new crypto legislation

A task force comprising private-sector experts and relevant ministries will “expedite the review process of bills on virtual assets,” said chairman of South Korea’s Financial Services Commission (FSC) Kim Joo-hyun at Thursday’s National Assembly meeting. See related article: South Korea’s all-encompassing crypto law is coming — what we know so far Fast facts Kim said […]

Klaytn chief says reducing ‘human elements’ can prevent hacks

After high-profile cyberattacks on decentralized apps, the blockchain industry is in a hurry to ramp up security. Sam Sangmin Seo, head of Klaytn, tells Forkast that minimizing human error may be the key.

HKMA announces competition to promote CBDCs

Hong Kong’s de-facto central bank, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA), has added a central bank digital currency (CBDC) section to an annual business competition in the city in order to encourage research into the use cases of digital currencies. See related article: Hong Kong to launch US$637 mln tech fund for startups: report Fast […]

Binance-WazirX spat heats up as investors yank funds from Indian exchange

Top blockchain and crypto news: Binance spurns WazirX amid India probe. BlackRock bets on Coinbase. Crypto influencers in China’s crosshairs.

India crypto traders try to dodge fallout from WazirX woes, spat with Binance

What’s a crypto trader to do when the government freezes exchange assets, sparking a war of words between supposedly ‘merged’ exchanges?

India’s CoinSwitch to fund Web 3.0 startups

Indian crypto exchange CoinSwitch has introduced a Web3 Discovery Fund with initial capital of US$10 million to back early stage startups. See related article:  CoinSwitch Kuber launches rupee index for Indian crypto market Fast facts The Web3 Discovery Fund will curate portfolio startups and provide single-window access to marquee investor partners, such as Tiger Global, […]

India’s WazirX says it has no-tolerance policy on illegal activities

Zanmai Labs Private Limited, the firm operating Indian cryptocurrency exchange WazirX, said Tuesday it has a no-tolerance policy towards any “illegal activities”. Users agree to use the exchange in accordance with applicable laws, the company said in a statement. See related article: Tax authorities recover US$9M from India’s biggest crypto exchanges Fast facts WazirX, one […]

Naver’s Zepeto metaverse starts blockchain initiative with Solana

South Korean metaverse platform Zepeto has teamed with Solana and Web 3.0 developer Jump Crypto to construct ZepetoX, a cryptocurrency-based metaverse project, according to a press release. See related article: HYBE, Softbank invest big in Zepeto metaverse creator Naver Z Fast facts ZepetoX aims to establish a 3D open-world platform where creators and users can […]

Thailand’s central bank to get more power in crypto regulation overhaul: report

Thailand’s central bank will receive more power as the South-East Asian nation steps up regulation of digital assets, said Thai Finance Minister Arkhom Termpittayapaisith. See related article: Thailand bans Bitcoin and crypto payments Fast facts Thailand plans to tighten its supervision of platforms and exchanges that offer trading in cryptocurrencies and other digital assets, Bloomberg […]

Digital dollar push; Tornado Cash blacklisted

Welcome to The Daily Forkast – August 9, 2022 – presented by Angie Lau. Coming up on today’s show: US lawmakers aim to push Fed on digital dollar. Circle freezes smart contract addresses linked to blacklisted Tornado Cash. Also, Hodlnaut freezes withdrawals, swaps and deposits. Zipmex to release specific amounts of Bitcoin and Ether. And […]

India’s WazirX to delist EasyFi

Indian cryptocurrency exchange WazirX will delist and cease trading on all trading pairs for EasyFi (EZ) on Aug. 11. It will continue to support withdrawals of these tokens from WazirX until Nov. 12.  See related article: Binance to stop off-chain transfers with India’s WazirX Fast facts WazirX periodically reviews each digital asset it lists and […]

Issue tokens later for growth, not for initial fundraising, advises Binance chief Changpeng Zhao

Web3 companies should issue tokens to accelerate growth, not to gather initial funds, said Binance founder and chief executive officer (CEO) Changpeng “CZ” Zhao at a fireside chat at Korea Blockchain Week 2022 on Tuesday.  See related article: Binance spent over US$1B on compliance, founder Changpeng Zhao says Fast facts “When people come into Web3 […]

Wemade CEO expects South Korea to lift ‘absurd’ ban on P2E next year

South Korea’s new administration under President Yoon Suk-yeol will likely abolish its ban on blockchain and play-to-earn gaming in 2023, Henry Chang, CEO of South Korea-based video game developer Wemade, said in a media interview joined by Forkast on Tuesday at Korea Blockchain Week 2022. See related article: NFT gaming to drive wider blockchain adoption, […]

Binance to stop off-chain transfers with India’s WazirX

Leading cryptocurrency exchange Binance will remove the off-chain fund transfer channel between India’s WazirX and itself beginning Aug. 11, following recent regulatory action taken against Zanmai Labs Private Limited, the entity operating WazirX. See related article:  Only the big fish will survive as India cracks the whip on crypto: Binance-backed WazirX Fast facts Users will […]

China shuts 13,000 social media accounts for promoting crypto investment

China has shut down nearly 13,000 accounts advocating cryptocurrency investments on popular Chinese social media platforms this year, deleted 51,000 related posts and closed 105 websites offering crypto-related information, the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) announced on Tuesday. See related article: Tencent to cut domestic NFT marketplace team, look overseas: report Fast facts See related […]

Crypto.com enters South Korea market with two local startup acquisitions

Cryptocurrency platform Crypto.com has forayed into South Korea with two acquisitions — payment service provider PnLink Co. and virtual asset service provider OK-BIT Co., the company said.  See related article: Crypto.com, K-pop agency Fantagio enter joint NFT venture Fast facts The Singapore-based company also said it secured registration under South Korea’s electronic financial transaction act […]

Netflix K-drama hit Extraordinary Attorney Woo to launch NFT project with Polygon

The production company behind Extraordinary Attorney Woo, an ongoing South Korean drama series and one of the most-watched non-English shows on Netflix, has teamed up with Polygon to build a non-fungible token (NFT) community to advocate for awareness of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). See related article: Netflix Sweet Home producer to build K-drama metaverse in […]

Business as usual at India’s WazirX as Binance distances itself

Indian crypto exchange WazirX said its operations are being conducted as usual, even after Binance denied owning equity in Zanmai Labs, the entity operating WazirX. The spat over ownership — Binance had reportedly acquired WazirX in 2019 — surfaced after Indian authorities reportedly froze US$8 million in WazirX assets, alleging possible violation of foreign exchange laws. […]

Why Singapore may be the ideal place for companies to rebuild post-crypto winter

Singapore is growing its digital assets industry while reducing risks, and its clear regulations allow firms to better plan for the future, writes Desmond Yong of DTC.

Bitget offers ‘protection fund’ to users as emergency insurance

Singapore-based cryptocurrency exchange Bitget says it has launched a US$200 million “protection fund” to act as an “emergency insurance reserve” to protect user funds when their losses are not a consequence of their own actions or behavior on the platform.  See related article: How the crypto winter is laying groundwork for Web3 to reach its […]

Welcome to Web3, (hopefully) not a bigger monster than its version 2 sibling

How does a centralized internet browser plan for a decentralized future? Reinvention, and finding a receptive audience. First stop, Southeast Asia.

Coinbase-Blackrock deal, India’s blockchain outlook

Coinbase and Blackrock partner up to provide institutional crypto access. Meanwhile, Instagram expands NFT platform.

South Korea’s all-encompassing crypto law is coming — what we know so far

Lawmakers are pulling together regulations for trading in digital assets. If all goes to plan, the so-called Digital Asset Basic Act will be in shape by the first half of 2023.

S.Korea’s Bithumb links system with Samsung Securities, mobile apps

South Korea’s leading digital asset exchange Bithumb is linking its system with mobile applications from three major domestic financial institutions — Samsung Securities, NH Nonghyup and KB Kookmin Bank, Bithumb announced Thursday. See related article: Scarred by Terra-LUNA, South Korea moves ahead with digital asset reform Fast facts Bithumb users can now check up-to-date crypto […]

Revolut starts crypto service in Singapore

Revolut has started offering cryptocurrency services to users in Singapore, the global fintech firm said on Thursday. See related article: How a market slump may be helping Singapore’s stance against retail crypto Fast facts Revolut will levy transaction fees of 2.5% and 1.5% on standard and premium plans, the company said in its statement. Customers […]

US crypto bill pile up; Philippines Binance warning

US Senate proposes the CFTC takes responsibility of Bitcoin and Ethereum. Meanwhile, Philippine authorities warn against Binance

Blockchain in India got off on wrong foot, says former finance chief 

India’s government doesn’t like cryptocurrencies and has made that clear in statements and with heavy taxes on the asset class, but what does that say about blockchain adoption?

India questions Binance-backed WazirX on foreign exchange violations

India’s Directorate of Enforcement (ED), responsible for enforcing economic laws and fighting economic crime, is investigating two cases against crypto exchange WazirX under the Foreign Exchange Management Act of 1999 (FEMA), reported local media. See related article: Only the big fish will survive as India cracks the whip on crypto: Binance-backed WazirX Fast facts Zanmai […]

S.Korea’s Hashed plans new VC fund round after losing US$3.6B in Terra LUNA

Kim Seo-joon, head of South Korean blockchain venture capital (VC) fund Hashed, said in an interview with Bloomberg he lost most of his LUNA investments during the crash in May but is planning a third VC fund in the first half of 2023. See related article: Scarred by Terra-LUNA, South Korea moves ahead with digital […]

Crypto.com, K-pop agency Fantagio enter joint NFT venture

South Korean entertainment agency Fantagio announced Wednesday a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with digital asset platform Crypto.com to pursue non-fungible token (NFT) projects, according to local reports. See related article: Dunamu’s NFT venture with BTS’s HYBE to launch services later this year Fast facts KOSDAQ-listed Fantagio manages K-pop idol groups such as ASTRO and Weki […]

Filecoin on a tear as cautious optimism returns to crypto markets

Top blockchain and crypto news: Filecoin leads in market uptick. CryptoPunks in new glow as Tiffany jewelry. Chinese firms flock to Singapore.