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Asia-Pacific

161 articles

April 2022

‘Voice of April’ NFTs highlight Shanghai’s struggles amid harsh lockdown

As many as 600 NFTs featuring a montage of audio calls and complaints made by Shanghai residents as they interacted with medical staff and neighborhood compound managers have appeared on OpenSea.

China expands digital yuan trial to cover tax, social security, toll gates

China has broadened the range of public services and the number of cities included in its digital yuan pilot project underway in the provinces of Zhejiang and Fujian. See related article: Chinese state media calls for wider e-CNY adoption Fast facts See related article: Hangzhou races to showcase digital yuan at Asian Games

US charges two Europeans with helping N.Korea evade sanctions with crypto

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) says it has charged Spaniard Alejandro Cao de Benos and U.K. citizen Christopher Emms with allegedly assisting former Ethereum developer Virgil Griffith in presenting the uses of crypto to avoid U.S. sanctions against the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK). See related article: Former Ethereum developer Virgil Griffith gets […]

DOGE jumps on Twitter deal; Australian crypto ETFs delay

Dogecoin skyrockets as Elon Musk’s Twitter deal finalizes. Meanwhile, a Korean music platform registers NFTs patent.

Zombie Zoo Keeper, Pen-Pineapple-Apple-Pen maker team up for PikoZoo NFT

Pikotaro, the Japanese singer-songwriter and creator of the 2016 global sensation Pen-Pineapple-Apple-Pen (PPAP), is teaming up with famed nine-year-old non-fungible token (NFT) artist Zombie Zoo Keeper to create a unique NFT project. See related article: Japan’s messenger app LINE launches NFT marketplace Fast facts The new music video, named “Zombie Zoo to PIKOTARO DESU,” will […]

Launch of three crypto ETFs in Australia delayed

After being on track to beat the US to the launch of a Bitcoin spot ETF, the delay is likely to undermine Australia’s desire to emerge as a top destination for digital assets in the developed world.

S.Korean music sharing platform to use NFTs for copyright protection

Koong World has been awarded a South Korean patent that utilizes non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and sound source information to enable artists to upload and share their works on its platform without fear of copyright infringement. See related article: What does Music have to do with NFTs? Fast facts The Korean Intellectual Property Office awarded Koong […]

University of the Philippines Twitter account hacked to promote NFT drop

Non-fungible token (NFT) scammers took control of the University of the Philippines’ official Twitter account on Monday evening, posting several tweets promoting a fake airdrop.  See related article: Twitter hacker takes over verified accounts to promote fake Azuki NFT drop Fast facts The attackers renamed the Twitter account to “takashi murakami” — the name of […]

Chinese streaming service Bilibili enables NFT transfers

Bilibili, a video streaming platform popular with China’s Generation Z, Monday enabled non-fungible tokens (NFTs) to be transferred between users, becoming the second major Chinese tech firm to allow NFT transfers after Alibaba. See related article: China state-backed paper’s NFTs surge in price on second-hand market Fast facts Bilibili requires a 30-day gap between each […]

Indian farmers’ protest NFTs find no takers on OpenSea

Editor’s Note: A previous version of this report stated the NFT proceeds will be donated to NGO Atam Pargas. The NGO has reached out to Forkast to clarify it is not associated with the NFT project. Lekh-Haq, the organizer of the NFT has confirmed this correction to Forkast. Indian journalists and filmmakers launched farmers’ protest […]

Binance makes Russia denial; CoinDCX talk future plans

Binance categorically denies sharing client data with Russia. Meanwhile, Chinese officials push for e-CNY use at the Asian Games.

Indian banks ask for clarity on use of UPI for crypto assets

India’s leading banks have asked the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) to issue a formal directive that explains the curbs on money transfers using the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) for trading in virtual digital assets. See related article: Coinbase snafu sets the cat among the crypto pigeons in India Fast facts Indian banks had […]

CoinDCX double downs as the going gets tough in India

CoinDCX cofounder Sumit Gupta tells Forkast in an exclusive interview the crypto exchange that recently raised US$135 million will look to triple its headcount by the end of the year.

OCBC Bank joins MVGX in push to help firms go carbon neutral

Singapore’s OCBC Bank has partnered with MetaVerse Green Exchange (MVGX) to develop financial solutions, including tokenized carbon credits, to help large corporations offset their carbon emissions, according to a statement. See related article: Crypto exchange Gemini buys carbon offsets, pledges carbon-neutrality Fast facts The tokenized carbon credits, due to launch later this year, will use […]

China’s sports brand Li Ning to showcase Bored Ape Yacht Club

Li Ning, a leading Chinese sportswear and equipment company headquartered in Beijing, is set to release a line of clothing featuring images of the Bored Ape Yacht Club #4102, as the brand looks to take advantage of the growing popularity of non-fungible tokens (NFTs). See related article: Chinese Communist Party paper to “develop” NFTs Fast […]

Axie Infinity hack proceeds continue to be laundered despite US sanctions

The Lazarus Group, the North Korean hacking group linked to the US$600 million Axie Infinity hack in March, is still laundering funds stolen from the hack despite sanctions imposed by the U.S.  See related article: Axie Infinity blockchain Ronin hacked for over $600M Fast facts Despite U.S. sanctions, North Korean hackers have been freely laundering […]

Cryptocurrency investors in South Korea catch a break on ‘Travel Rule’

A month after South Korea adopted the Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) travel rule, two solution providers VerifyVASP and CODE have linked their services on Monday to allow seamless access to exchanges for investors. See related article: DeFi, NFT access at stake as FATF travel rule takes effect in South Korea Fast facts The FATF […]

Hangzhou races to showcase digital yuan at Asian Games

Preparing to show off the capabilities of the digital yuan at the Asia Games is a priority from April to August, despite high possibilities of a delay in the event itself. See related article: Asian Games set for digital yuan, metaverse pilots, tech firm claims Fast facts China wants to showcase the digital yuan at […]

Crypto industry looks to the UAE; Crypto’s environmental concerns

More crypto players are eyeing the UAE as a hub. Meanwhile, a mysterious map sends Pudgy Penguin NFTs skyrocketing.

A fast one from down under: Australia approves BTC, ETH ETFs

While the cryptocurrency industry continues to wait with bated breath for a spot-traded Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) to be approved in the U.S., three separate crypto funds were given the green light in Australia this week.  Australia’s ETFS Management (AUS) Ltd., or ETF Securities, launched a Bitcoin and an Ethereum fund, in partnership with Switzerland-based […]

Be kind, rewind! South Korea’s Cyworld is back in Web 3.0 avatar

Time to dust off your Dotori. The social media platform that once reigned in South Korea is trying to make a grand comeback with in-game crypto, NFTs and the metaverse.

Hong Kong’s subway operator plans virtual station in metaverse

Hong Kong rail operator MTR Corporation announced Thursday that it will partner with The Sandbox on a metaverse project to build a subway-themed virtual world theme park. See related article: Sandcastles in cyberspace and the rise of the metaverse Fast facts The rail operator said it will partner with The Sandbox, a subsidiary of Animoca […]

South Korea approves fifth cash-to-crypto exchange

South Korea’s Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) Thursday said it approved GOPAX as the country’s fifth digital asset exchange to provide cash-to-crypto services. See related article: South Korea’s crypto crackdown: What you need to know Fast facts Cash-to-crypto services on GOPAX starts Apr. 28. Last September, South Korea mandated strict licensing requirements for crypto exchanges to […]

US sanctions Bitriver; Apecoin steals Doge’s thunder

A Russian crypto miner has been added to the US Sanctions list. Meanwhile, Dogecoin underperforms as Apecoin storms ahead.

NFT marketplaces responsible for keeping fakes out, Chinese court rules

Under Chinese copyright law, the court ruled a marketplace’s failure to ensure the uniqueness of an NFT constituted aiding infringement.

Caught between a rock and a hard place, Singapore tightens crypto oversight

A desire to stay in line with global anti-money laundering and anti-terrorism norms is forcing the city state’s hand when it comes to regulating cryptocurrency exchanges.

Australia to list crypto spot ETFs; WazirX founders leave India

Bitcoin and Ethereum ETFs are coming to Australia. Meanwhile, Dogecoin Day has fans hyped.

World Bank rescue package throws lifeline to crypto markets

Top blockchain and crypto news: Crisis response brings crypto relief. North Korea’s Lazarus Group named in Ronin hack. NFTs face new risks in China.

Alibaba extends NFT reach with its food delivery arm

Alibaba-owned Ele.me announced the launch of its first non-fungible tokens (NFTs) on Tuesday with the Hangzhou Cuisine Museum, featuring traditional Hangzhou dish cod meatballs. See related article: Chinese tech giant Huawei debuts NFTs Fast facts See related article: China’s largest broadcaster’s NFT series becomes a trilogy

S.Korea eyes restraints on crypto unicorn Dunamu over monopoly concerns

The Korea Fair Trade Commission (KFTC) is reportedly planning to designate local crypto exchange Upbit owner Dunamu as an enterprise subject to limitations on mutual investment, which would add more regulations to the entity. See related article: Two crypto exchanges reach unicorn status in South Korea Fast facts A company with total assets over 10 […]

India’s WazirX cofounders move to Dubai

Cofounders of the Binance-backed Indian crypto exchange WazirX have reportedly moved to Dubai amid regulatory uncertainty and taxation, local media report. See related article: India’s crypto tax will incur losses for government, says WazirX CEO Fast facts Nischal Shetty and Siddharth Menon have reportedly moved to Dubai along with their families.  “Crypto has no boundaries,” […]

Bitcoin and Ethereum spot ETFs landing in Australia next week

Australia’s mass retail appetite for cryptocurrency is about to be tested as two Bitcoin and one Ethereum spot exchange-traded funds (ETFs) have been approved for listing. See related article: New Australian ETF grants exposure to Bitcoin mining sector Fast facts All three ETFs are set to go live on Cboe (formally Chi-X) Exchange on April […]

US says North Korea behind Ronin hack; Binance closer to Thai business

US authorities says North Korea is responsible for Ronin hack. Meanwhile, Binance and Gulf Energy initiate joint venture.

India’s crypto shakedown be damned, CoinDCX raises $135 million

Indian cryptocurrency exchange CoinDCX’s latest funding comes as investors double down on the country’s potential to emerge as the world’s top market despite government apathy.  See related story: CoinDCX’s Sumit Gupta on CBDCs, regulation and India’s potential for crypto in 2021 Fast facts Series D funding was led by Pantera and Steadview Capital, the company […]

Hyundai Motor drives into metaverse branding with Meta Kongz NFT project

Hyundai Motor plans to support its own non-fungible token (NFT) community with an initial token release in collaboration with Meta Kongz this week, and a dedicated NFT website to launch in May. See related article: 20,000 line up for South Korean convenience store’s NFTs on White Day Fast facts Hyundai Motor, South Korea’s leading automobile […]

China’s largest broadcaster’s NFT series becomes a trilogy

State-owned broadcaster China Central Television (CCTV) ‘s online branch will launch a new NFT series on Thursday to celebrate the seventh China Space Day.  See related article: China’s industry lobbies join NFT bashing chorus Fast facts CCTV’s first NFT collection was issued for free during Chinese New Year on Tencent’s blockchain. The second batch was […]

Binance closer to Thai business as Gulf Energy greenlights joint venture

Binance has entered into a joint venture agreement in collaboration with billionaire Sarath Ratanavadi’s Gulf Energy Development to set up a crypto exchange in Thailand. See related article: Binance wins Abu Dhabi nod for another MENA outpost Fast facts Once the joint venture is established, it will apply for a digital asset exchange license with […]

North Korea behind Ronin hack: US

The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Department of the Treasury allege North Korea’s Lazarus Group and APT38 were responsible for stealing cryptocurrencies worth about US$620 million off the Ethereum sidechain Ronin. See related article: Axie Infinity blockchain Ronin hacked for over $600M Fast facts The hack was perpetrated by the Democratic People’s […]

Blockchain, metaverse important for India’s growth: MP

Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are going to be increasingly important with the rise in time spent on metaverses, Jayant Sinha, a member of parliament and Chairman of India’s Standing Committee on Finance, told The Economic Times on Monday.  See related article: India to make life hell for crypto investors: MP Fast facts Sinha’s comments come at […]

China launches metaverse lab

Top-rated Tsinghua University Friday established China’s first metaverse culture laboratory to promote the study and development of the country’s growing metaverse space. See related article:  China will soon have its first bachelor’s program in blockchain. Why isn’t the talent-starved industry more excited? Fast facts The new laboratory will be used for research in the future […]

Xiamen issues China’s first blockchain-based commemorative subway ticket

Xiamen, a major city in China’s southeastern province Fujian, Friday issued China’s first batch of digital commemorative subway tickets based on Alibaba’s blockchain, AntChain. See related article: More courts in China accept blockchain-stored evidence Fast facts The digital ticket bears a likeness to a decorative metal badge,  and is themed with a combination of Xiamen […]

India’s crypto exchanges switch to P2P, bank transfers

Crypto exchanges in India are switching to facilitating user-to-user bank transfers and inward remittances to work around a withdrawal of support from the developer of the country’s ubiquitous UPI payments system, local media report.   See related article: Coinbase snafu sets the cat among the crypto pigeons in India Fast facts Indian cryptocurrency exchanges are trying […]

Chinese state media calls for wider e-CNY adoption

Xinhua News Agency’s affiliate newspaper, Economic Information Daily, Thursday published an op ed suggesting measures for the further adoption of the digital yuan. See related article: The digital yuan’s de-dollarization Fast facts See related article:Hong Kong makes apt testbed for e-CNY cross-border use

Chinese Communist Party paper to “develop” NFTs

The online arm of People’s Daily said it will cooperate with state-owned enterprise China Arts and Entertainment Group to develop non-fungible tokens (NFTs) themed on Chinese traditional and modern paintings. See related article: Resist the temptation on NFTs, Chinese state-backed developer says Fast facts Announcement from the official newspaper of the Central Committee of the […]

BSN developer’s NFT warning; LINE launches NFTs

State-backed developer delivers warning on the state of NFTs in China. Meanwhile, LINE launches a NFT marketplace.

Resist the temptation on NFTs, Chinese state-backed developer says

In an exclusive interview with Forkast, the head of government-founded Blockchain-based Service Network (BSN) cautioned against packaging NFTs as investment products despite the temptation to profit off the euphoria.

Japan’s messenger app LINE launches NFT marketplace

LINE, Japan’s dominant mobile chatting app, on Wednesday officially launched its non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace LINE NFT through its Osaka-based blockchain subsidiary LVC. See related article: Asia Primed For NFT Growth Fast facts Users can purchase and trade NFTs on the platform and store them on the LINE BITMAX Wallet, which can be accessed via […]

China museum chief fences cultural relics from NFTs

China’s top government agency that oversees the development of museums has called on cultural institutions to hit the brakes when it comes to non-fungible tokens (NFTs).  See related article: China’s industry lobbies join NFT bashing chorus Fast facts The National Cultural Heritage Administration Tuesday held a nationwide online symposium in Beijing on digital collectibles and […]

Virgil Griffith jailed; Indian exchanges disable UPI

Welcome to The Daily Forkast – April 13, 2022 – Presented by Megha Chaddah. Coming up on today’s show: Former Ethereum developer Virgil Griffith gets 63 months in prison. Coinbase snafu sets cat among the crypto pigeons in India. Huawei becomes latest of China’s tech giants to issue NFTs.  We’ll have more on those stories […]

Bitcoin follows blue chips south amid market turmoil

Top blockchain and crypto news: Market contagion hits crypto. Ethereum developer pays price for bad Korea move. China whacks more crypto miners.

China’s industry lobbies join NFT bashing chorus

Self-regulatory bodies overseeing China’s banking and securities industries are urging members to “resolutely curb” the “financialization and securitization” wave of non-fungible tokens (NFTs).

Coinbase snafu sets the cat among the crypto pigeons in India

Coinbase’s showcasing of support by government-backed National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) set the ball rolling on the cryptocurrency exchange being yanked from the ubiquitous Unified Payments Interface (UPI).

Chinese tech giant Huawei debuts NFTs

Huawei’s cloud computing arm Tuesday airdropped the brand’s first batch of non-fungible tokens (NFTs), making it the latest Chinese tech giant to join the trend. See related article: China’s Xpeng joins the bandwagon in selling NFTs on Alibaba Fast facts See related article: China’s Communist Party wants to regulate NFTs

SFC allows HK’s MaiCapital to manage 100% digital-assets portfolio

The development allows the city to emerge as a top destination for asset managers looking to launch cryptocurrency-themed funds for professional investors. See related article: More traditional investors are eyeing cryptocurrency to diversify their portfolios Fast facts The Securities and Futures Commission (SFC)-licensed blockchain and virtual assets manager can manage portfolios that may comprise up […]

Indian taxes hit trading; Bored Apes movie debut

India’s crypto tax continues to break the crypto industry’s back. Meanwhile, Bored Apes are set to have a movie debut.

Cryptos slump over inflation, Shanghai lockdown and war concerns

Bitcoin and Ethereum were down more than 5% each in Asian trading hours as cryptocurrency markets slumped in lockstep with traditional assets.

India tax breaks crypto’s back

Trading volumes at India’s major cryptocurrency exchanges slumped to their lowest in years after new taxes kicked in on April 1, according to research by Crebaco. See related article: Coinbase’s India launch hits road bump Fast facts U.S. dollar trading volume dropped by 72% on WazirX, 59% on ZebPay, 52% on CoinDCX and 41% on […]

T Scientific to acquire 60% of S.Korean crypto exchange Hanbitco for $19.5 mln

South Korean mobile services company T Scientific announced Monday it will purchase a 60.36% stake in PlutusDS, the operator of local cryptocurrency exchange Hanbitco. See related article: South Korea crypto exchange underdogs: Where are they now? Fast facts T Scientific, a South Korean company specializing in the provision of mobile coupons and mobile commerce services, […]

China’s Xpeng joins the bandwagon in selling NFTs on Alibaba

Chinese electric vehicle maker Xpeng is selling “digital collectibles” as part of its marketing campaign to mark the 100,000th rollout of a complete vehicle. See related article: Lamborghini’s last all-gas Aventador to be auctioned with NFT Fast facts See related article: China’s Communist Party wants to regulate NFTs

Need for Speed gets Hong Kong’s Animoca in driver’s seat

Hong Kong-based Animoca Brands has acquired French racing game studio Eden Games, as Animoca expands its blockchain gaming business. See related article: Animoca Brands halts services to Russians: report Fast facts The acquisition is aimed at developing a series of new blockchain-based racing games, Animoca said. The US$16 million purchase comes after Animoca bought game […]

MobiKwik pulls crypto support; Twitter NFT hacker strikes again

In India, Mobikwik yanks crypto support. Meanwhile in the cyberspace, a Twitter hack promotes a fake NFT drop.

Twitter hacker takes over verified accounts to promote fake Azuki NFT drop

India’s Ministry of Education was one of the latest victims in a series of hacks against verified Twitter accounts promoting fake Azuki non-fungible token (NFT) airdrops.  See related article: Azuki spikes past Bored Apes in daily sales Fast facts India’s University Grant Commission (UGC), which has more than 295,000 followers on Twitter, was hacked on […]

China seizes over 3,500 Bitcoin mining rigs, hikes electricity rates

The provinces of Guangdong, Heilongjiang, and Shanxi announced Bitcoin mining equipment seizures and other measures to phase out operations that have survived waves of crackdowns that followed the September crypto ban. See related article: China takes aim at corruption in underground Bitcoin mines Fast facts See related article: Bitcoin miners unwelcome in Hangzhou despite targeted […]

China’s Sichuan province launches NFT marketplace

The cultural and tourism authority in Southwest China’s Sichuan province built a non-fungible token (NFT) trading platform to “encourage the music industry to actively adopt modern technology.” See related article: China’s Shandong TV to build NFT marketplace Fast facts The Sichuan government Thursday said a number of music companies are using blockchain technology to safeguard […]

Indian e-wallet provider MobiKwik yanks crypto support

Indian e-wallet service provider MobiKwik withdrew support for crypto exchanges from April 1, local media report.  See related article: Coinbase’s India launch hits road bump Fast facts MobiKwik’s withdrawal comes as the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) distanced itself from offering a payments gateway to Coinbase.  NPCI developed and operates India’s ubiquitous Unified Payments […]

South Korea’s ‘crypto friendly’ president seeks STO, IEO oversight

South Korean president-elect Yoon Suk-yeol is reportedly working with financial authorities to regulate security token offerings (STOs) and initial exchange offerings (IEOs).  See related article: A crypto bull wins the presidency: What it means for South Korea Fast facts STOs, currently being reviewed by Yoon’s Presidential Transition Committee, tokenize traditional securities such as real estate […]

Coinbase India setback; Hong Kong’s Bitcoin ATMs

Coinbase’s launch in India is off to a rocky start. Meanwhile, Bitcoin ATMs grow in Hong Kong.

Bitcoin ATMs face existential threat in Hong Kong

Authorities in Hong Kong moving to block retail investors from accessing non-derivative crypto products could undermine the presence of Bitcoin ATMs in the city with the most crypto ATMs in Asia.

Coinbase’s India launch hits road bump

The governing body overseeing India’s Unified Payments Interface (UPI) said it isn’t aware of any cryptocurrency exchange using the platform, hours after Coinbase said users could use the same to buy and trade cryptocurrencies.  See related article: SEC threatens to sue Coinbase over high-yield savings account Fast facts Nasdaq-listed Coinbase launched crypto trading services in […]

First S.Korean bank issues crypto accounts for corporations

Shinhan Bank became South Korea’s first domestic lender to trial real-name corporate accounts for cash-to-crypto transactions, paving the way for an institutional crypto boom in the peninsula. See related article: South Korean banks find workaround to cash in on crypto services Fast facts Local regulations permit only licensed and bank-partnered crypto exchanges to offer cash-to-crypto […]

e-CNY now a payment option on WeChat Pay in all pilot areas

By offering China’s digital currency in trial as a payments option in all pilot areas, payments giant WeChat Pay is paving the way for the wider adoption of the digital yuan in the world’s most advanced digital payments market. See related article: China’s digital yuan is now in 23 cities Fast facts WeChat Wednesday said […]

Opensea’s Solana beta begins; Binance bails out Sky Mavis

Chinese state media calls for stronger regulations of NFTs. Meanwhile, Sky Mavis raises $150M to offset Ronin hack.