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Asia-Pacific

161 articles

August 2021

The9 sets up another joint venture to mine crypto in Kazakhstan

The9 Ltd., a Chinese gaming company that only a few months ago pivoted its business to crypto mining, is setting up another joint venture in Kazakhstan as it ramps up its mining operations in the Central Asian nation that shares a border with China. Fast facts Nasdaq-listed The9 has signed an investment memorandum through a subsidiary […]

Bit Digital reports growing losses as it moves crypto miners from China to North America

Bit Digital, a New York-headquartered Bitcoin mining company that has had significant operations in China, recorded growing losses in the second quarter of this year as it continued relocating its China-based machines to North America. Fast facts In the second quarter of this year, Nasdaq-listed Bit Digital booked a net loss of US$1.34 million, compared […]

Binance taps former SGX chief regulatory officer as Singapore CEO

Binance Singapore today announced the appointment of Richard Teng, former chief regulatory officer of the Singapore Exchange (SGX), as chief executive, bolstering its leadership ranks with former regulators while battling growing regulatory woes around the world. Fast facts Teng was CEO of the Abu Dhabi Global Market for six years before stepping down in March. […]

As China cracks down on crypto, blockchain technology keeps flowering

Steelmaker Ansteel Group and lithium battery producer Tianneng are the latest companies to make use of blockchain in accordance with China’s national strategy.

Aussie tech entrepreneur offers Bitcoin to those vaccinated against Covid

Finder.com CEO Fred Schebesta is offering AU$5 (US$2.85) worth of Bitcoin to every Australian who is fully vaccinated against Covid-19. Fast facts Announcing the plan on Sydney radio this week, the self-made millionaire said he was looking for a way to contribute to the vaccination effort and thought this could be a way to help. […]

Thai-listed Brooker Group reports $24 million in crypto holdings in 1H 2021

The Brooker Group, a publicly listed financial consultancy and capital management company in Bangkok, this week reported that it held US$23.86 million of digital assets, according to its financial results for the first six months of 2021. Fast facts The Brooker Group also reported an impairment loss of US$12 million in the first half of […]

Justin Sun’s Weibo account blocked again

TRON founder Justin Sun’s social media account on Weibo, China’s Twitter-like microblog platform, appears to have been blocked again, along with the accounts of several other cryptocurrency-related interests. Fast facts TRON is a blockchain with a cryptocurrency native to the system founded by Sun in 2017. Sun, 31, has been active on social media, and […]

China shuts down website and social media of high-profile blockchain center

China continues its crackdown on certain illegal social organizations, as authorities shut down the website and social media accounts of the China Blockchain Application Center — a organization once led by some of the nation’s most prominent crypto industry leaders, state media China National Radio reported yesterday. Fast facts The China Blockchain Application Center was […]

Thailand publishes CBDC study results, pilot test to start in 2022

The Bank of Thailand today published the results of its retail central bank digital currency (CBDC) study and public survey, which the central bank says will guide the development of the country’s CBDC pilot test. Fast facts The Bank of Thailand underscored that a CBDC for the general public “must not adversely affect monetary policy […]

Shanghai court rules Bitcoin is virtual property, not currency

A district court in Shanghai has ruled that Bitcoin is virtual property, not a currency that is allowed to circulate, according to a statement released earlier this week. Fast facts A Minhang district court in Shanghai stated this week that it heard a case in which a plaintiff purchased Bitcoin mining machines from a defendant […]

BIT Mining revenue soars despite losses from operational pivot

Operating costs and crypto bear market suck up cash after former lottery operator bets on digital assets

Led by Vietnam and India, global crypto adoption jumps over 880%

Asia is now tops in the world in cryptocurrency adoption. Vietnam, India and Pakistan are now the top three countries in the world in crypto use — and other Asian countries aren’t far behind, according to Chainalysis’ 2021 Global Crypto Adoption Index published today. Fast facts Thailand, China and the Philippines also ranked in the […]

IBM, Nomura to use blockchain for plastics recycling in new consortium

IBM Japan, Mitsui Chemicals and Nomura Research Institute have announced a new consortium to explore how blockchain technology can be used to create better plastic recycling methods, according to a press release from the NRI. Fast facts Making new plastics from recycled plastics is an exact process that requires knowing the specific chemical makeup of […]

Union Bank of Philippines partners with Hex Trust to enter digital asset ecosystem

Union Bank of the Philippines and Hex Trust, a Hong Kong-based digital asset custodian, today announced that the bank was partnering with Hex Trust to provide digital asset custody services to it as it enters the digital asset sector. Fast facts As part of the collaboration, Hex Trust will provide digital asset custody as an […]

India’s crypto sector on edge as bill that may lead to ban awaits cabinet approval

If cabinet approves crypto bill by November, it could be introduced as early as parliament’s winter session.

Kakao to spearhead global expansion of Klaytn blockchain from Singapore

South Korean internet giant Kakao this week announced that its newly established non-profit entity headquartered in Singapore — the Klaytn Foundation — will lead the development and global expansion of the Klaytn blockchain, according to a company release. Fast facts The Klaytn Foundation, together with Krust, Kakao’s newly established global accelerator unit, and GroundX, which […]

U.S., Indonesia drive NFT wave, DappRadar report shows

A new report by DappRadar shows that interest in NFTs has come mainly from the United States and Indonesia, and that Russia and India have a presence in the market as well. Fast facts DappRadar, an NFT and decentralized finance and decentralized app store and a data provider, revealed this month in its user behavior […]

HIVE buys more crypto mining rigs from Bitmain, adding to Canaan deal

HIVE Blockchain Technologies, a Vancouver-headquartered crypto mining company, is buying 1,800 machines from Chinese mining rig maker Bitmain to expand its mining operation. Fast facts HIVE said that it had ordered 1,800 Antminer S19j Pro miners from Bitmain, and the new machines are expected to bring an aggregate hash power of 180 petahash per second, […]

Asia leads world in crypto investment, report says

Asian nations are leading the world in retail crypto investment, according to a recent report by Finder.com, which found that of 27 countries surveyed, the top five were all in Asia. Fast facts Vietnam was by far the leader in crypto adoption, with 41% of respondents saying they owned at least one cryptocurrency. Indonesia and […]

Polygon acquires Hermez Network for US$250M

Hermez Network, a prominent zero-knowledge cryptography-based scaling project, will merge with India-based Polygon, an Ethereum scaling project, Polygon announced on Friday. Fast facts Polygon has initiated the process of merging Hermez, including its technology, team, live solutions and HEZ tokens into its ecosystem. Hermez will operate under the name Polygon Hermez as a part of […]

India gets Bitcoin rewards cards with backing from crypto-averse central bank

GoSats, an Indian Bitcoin rewards app, has launched a new cash back card that will allow Indians to earn up to 100% of their spending in Bitcoin and provide a chance to win one full Bitcoin on every spend, GoSats announced in a tweet. Fast facts The GoSats prepaid RuPay debit cards will be released […]

Why Silicon Valley is pouring big money into India’s crypto industry

While Delhi goes back and forth over a crypto ban, crypto’s huge growth potential in the world’s second most populous country is captivating American venture capital.

Samsung joins South Korean pilot to test CBDC on Galaxy smartphone

Samsung Electronics will participate in the Bank of Korea’s central bank digital currency pilot program to test the practicalities of digital currency remittances without internet availability, according to a report by the Korea Times. Fast facts An unnamed source familiar with the issue told the Korea Times: “Samsung Electronics has recently decided to participate in […]

Cricket NFT platform Rario launches on Polygon

Rario, an officially licensed cricket non-fungible token startup built on the Polygon blockchain, has announced its integration with Polygon’s NFT platform, Polygon Studios. Fast facts Polygon Studios, an NFT-focused gaming and metaverse hub, was launched last month by Indian Ethereum scaling platform Polygon to facilitate Web 3.0 gaming and fuel mainstream adoption of NFTs. It […]

Cambodian central bank, Maybank partner on cross-border digital currency transfers

Malaysia’s Maybank and the National Bank of Cambodia yesterday announced the launch of a real-time funds transfer service between Malaysia and Cambodia — the first international partnership between a bank and Cambodia’s Bakong digital payments system. Fast facts The service facilitates fund transfers via NBC’s Bakong e-wallet and Maybank’s MAE app. It allows Maybank customers […]

WazirX signs up small-city women crypto investors

Tier II and Tier III cities in India registered massive growth in new user signups on WazirX, more than the larger cities.

XRP price rises as GME joins RippleNet to expand remittances between S. Korea and Thailand

San Francisco-based payments technology company Ripple this week announced that South Korean money transfer company, Global Money Express Co. Ltd (GME Remittance), has joined RippleNet to expand remittances between South Korea and Thailand. Fast facts Some 184,000 Thai nationals live in South Korea, and they account for the third largest group of foreign nationals in […]

China’s mining exodus flows to U.S. Is Texas the new promised land?

Poolin, a major mining pool in China, has set sail for America. ‘Large players are all over the U.S. now looking for deals.’

NFTs and the music industry: K-pop’s new token economy | Part 2

K-pop superstars Brave Girls, Se7en and A.C.E. are among the latest to jump on the non-fungible token bandwagon. Are fans buying it?
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Hong Kong artists embrace NFTs as OpenSea trading volume explodes

Despite speculation that the NFT market is cooling, OpenSea continues to post record transaction volumes, and Hong Kong artists are getting in on the action.

India’s CoinDCX crypto exchange becomes unicorn with US$90M in funding

CoinDCX, an Indian cryptocurrency exchange, has become the country’s first crypto unicorn with a US$90 million Series C fundraise, the company announced today. The funding was led by Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin’s B Capital. The fresh funding pegs CoinDCX’s valuation at US$ 1.1 billion. Fast facts Founded in 2018, CoinDCX offers a range of crypto […]

Unocoin now allows Indians to buy pizza, coffee with Bitcoin

Several cryptocurrency payment methods exist around the world, but new service is the first major one of its kind in India.

What is the regulatory outlook for virtual asset exchanges in Hong Kong and Singapore?

Singapore and Hong Kong are at the forefront of regulations over crypto exchanges, writes Vince Turcotte of Eventus Systems. Here’s why trade surveillance and risk management will be critical.

Latest digital yuan trial launches with backing of JD.com, Bank of Communications

E-commerce company’s tie-up with government-owned lender suggests hybrid private-state future for central bank digital currency.

Binance winds down derivatives trading in Hong Kong

Binance — the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by trading volume — today announced that it will be restricting the use of its derivatives products for customers from Hong Kong. Fast facts Hong Kong customers will, with immediate effect, not be able to open new Binance deriviative product accounts, according to a Binance announcement posted at […]

DBS Bank’s digital exchange assets surge 60% in Q2

DBS eyes bigger investor base as digital assets under custody top US$100 million.

Rothschild’s RIT Capital leads funding round for Aspen Digital to provide crypto services for institutional investors

Hong Kong-based Aspen Digital, a digital asset management platform for institutional investors, announced on Wednesday that it has secured US$8.8 million in pre-A funding to develop a one-stop shop for asset managers to invest in digital assets and manage their clients’ portfolios. Fast facts The funding round was led by RIT Capital Partners, the London-based […]

Ethereum upgrade closely watched; India launches e-RUPI voucher

Ethereum upgrade closely watched also India launches e-RUPI voucher

Two Chinese provinces use state blockchain platform for export credit insurance worth US$3.27B

Chinese central bank branches in Fujian and Guangxi provinces have announced that their provinces did US$2.4 billion and US$875 million, respectively, of blockchain-based export credit insurance financing for the first half of 2021. Fast facts Fujian Province struck a total of 6,516 insurance deals, and Guangxi Province saw 166 enterprises participate. On May 17, the […]

Mastercard partners with Australian exchange for crypto card

In a further move towards cryptocurrency adoption, Mastercard has partnered with one of Australia’s oldest crypto exchanges, CoinJar, to launch one of the country’s first crypto payment cards. Fast facts The card became available on Tuesday in a digital form through integration with Apple Pay and Google Pay, and will be available in a physical […]

Singapore poised to grant one of first approvals to crypto exchange Independent Reserve

Australian cryptocurrency exchange Independent Reserve said Monday that it had received an “in-principle approval” for a Major Payment Institution License in Singapore to operate as a regulated digital payment token (DPT) service provider, according to a company statement. Fast facts Founded in Australia in 2013, Independent Reserve set up its first overseas operations in Singapore […]

Crypto crimes surge to record levels in Hong Kong

Crypto-related crime has hit record levels in Hong Kong for the first six months of this year, with one victim losing HK$124 million (US$15.95 million) to fraudsters, according to the South China Morning Post. Fast facts Hong Kong police recorded 496 such cases totaling HK$214.4 million (US$27.58 million) in just the first half of this […]

Chinese central bank shows no sign of softening stance on crypto

People’s Bank of China vows to keep sector under ‘heavy pressure’ as it pushes digital yuan.

Binance in Malaysia ban as it ends derivatives trading in Germany, Italy, Netherlands

World’s biggest cryptocurrency exchange steps up compliance and cuts product offerings, with a ban in Malaysia and end of lucrative derivatives business in three EU nations.

July 2021

India admits it has no good data on crypto exchanges, despite years of debate over regulations

Speaking to Parliament, India’s finance minister reveals that the government does not know how many crypto exchanges India has nor the number of crypto users.

Chinese authorities swoop on 380 suspected crypto and wire fraud groups in 1H 2021

Wire fraud, including cryptocurrency-related fraud, becomes fastest-growing crime as scams — some even involving China’s digital yuan project — proliferate.

Friends may forgive debts, but WeChat’s new blockchain IOU won’t let anyone forget it

China’s internet giant Tencent launched a blockchain-based digital IOU service on its flagship product WeChat, one of the nation’s most popular apps for messaging and payments.  Fast facts Aside from Wechat’s existing “mini receipt” and “mini contract,” Tencent says its new IOU function would allow friends to borrow money more easily from each other, according […]

India admits no crypto data; Korean crypto investor numbers plummet

Number of new South Korean crypto investors have tanked in the month of June as crypto mining investments boom outside China.

Is Bitcoin mining hot again? These crypto insiders think so

Despite China’s crackdowns on Bitcoin mining and growing consternation about crypto mining’s carbon footprint, some miners are betting big on a rosy future.

Iran’s electric utility issues warning about Chinese crypto miners

Iranian state electric company Tavanir has warned judicial officials about Chinese cryptocurrency miners coming to Iran, an influx that could worsen the country’s power outage problems, according to local media reports. Fast facts Tavanir CEO Mohammad Hussein Motevallizadeh said in a letter published by local news website Eghtesadnews that the Chinese government’s crackdown on crypto […]

Crypto mining rig giant Bitmain divests from AntPool, the world’s biggest mining pool

Bitmain’s move comes amid China’s crypto mining crackdowns and AntPool’s shrinking hashrate. Is Bitmain gussying up for an IPO?

Bitmain spins off Antpool; Binance CEO willing to step down

Binance CEO CZ confirms that a new executive may lead the organization. Meanwhile, Bitmain spins off one of the world’s largest mining pool Antpool.

Amazon’s brush with Bitcoin. Robinhood IPO looms. Huobi backs out of Beijing.

Top blockchain and crypto news: Is Amazon taking up BTC? Robinhood’s share sale deserves scrutiny. Did Huobi jump or was it pushed?

Thailand telecoms firm to expand into Bitcoin mining

Jasmine Telecom Systems, a publicly-listed unit of Thai telecoms operator Jasmine International, is set to ride the Bitcoin mining wave, with plans to install tens of thousands of mining machines over the next few years. Fast facts JTS is kicking off plans to deploy 500 mining machines in a data center in the third quarter […]

Huobi’s stock plunges in Hong Kong as it shuts Beijing unit

Closure of blockchain business may be related to regulatory concerns, but unlikely to hit crypto industry hard, observers say.

Singapore crypto license applications in final stages of review

Singapore’s central bank is in the final stages of reviewing applications for licenses to provide crypto services, including payments and the operation of cryptocurrency exchanges, according to Tharman Shanmugaratnam, minister in charge of the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), which regulates financial institutions in Singapore. Fast facts To date, Singapore has received over 480 crypto […]

Chinese crypto firms donate millions of yuan to flood-hit Henan

Three blockchain and crypto-related companies have donated hundreds of millions of yuan to China’s Henan Province, which has suffered deadly floods since last week. Fast facts Bitmain, a crypto mining firm was the first to announce a donation of 10 million yuan (US$1.54 million) on July 23 to a charity federation in Zhengzhou, the provincial […]

Bitmain joins hands with Kazakhstan mining farm Enegix to host rigs

Chinese cryptocurrency mining rig maker Bitmain has partnered with Enegix, which runs one of the biggest crypto mining data centers in Kazakhstan, to host its Antminer machines in the Central Asian nation. Fast facts Bitmain said in a statement on Friday that it had joined hands with Enegix, a data center operator in Kazakhstan, to […]

BIT Mining to exit lottery business for crypto mining expansion

BIT Mining — a New York Stock Exchange-listed company that only months ago became a big investor in Chinese cryptocurrency mining — has decided to exit its Chinese lottery-related business and focus more on mining outside the country. Fast facts BIT Mining, formerly known as 500.com, has operated online sports lottery services, but announced on […]

Thai crypto miner found dead after suspected electronics accident

Case could be first fatality associated with mining, although hot-running equipment has history of starting fires.

Chinese electricity bills to become payable using digital yuan

A digital yuan wallet app launched by China’s central bank will include an electricity bill payment feature designed by the country’s State Grid, according to Economic Information Daily, a local financial media outlet.  Fast facts Users will be able to pay their electricity bills through the digital yuan app directly and do not need to […]

Hyper-realistic virtual influencer Rae mints NFTs

It’s not only real-world idols that look to earn a profit from issuing non-fungible tokens. Rae — a virtual influencer in Singapore rendered through computer-generated imagery and powered by artificial intelligence — is selling “her” first NFTs on Mintable. Fast facts Rae — whose creators’ identities remain mysterious — has dropped her first NFT series […]

Shipping network launches blockchain-based cargo app in China

Trade platform the Global Shipping Business Network has launched its first blockchain-based application in China to reduce paper usage and enhance efficiency and transparency in the shipping industry. Fast facts Named Cargo Release, the new blockchain-based app will connect the whole shipping supply chain, including shipping lines, consignees, their agents and terminals.  The app promises […]

Chinese insurer Ping An seeks digital yuan payments for new Covid-19 policy

China’s trial of e-CNY, the digital version of the national currency, the yuan, has extended to the insurance industry, with conglomerate Ping An encouraging medical staff in the southern city of Shenzhen to pay premiums for a Covid-19 insurance plan using the new currency. Fast facts One Ping An branch in Shenzhen is offering insurance […]

Crypto miner ships China-based rigs abroad in deal with U.S. fossil fuels firm

Optimum Mining Host-Black Rock Petroleum plan comes as Canaan seeks greener operations through Czech partnership.

Chinese e-commerce giant Taobao sells NFTs at annual shopping festival

Demand for non-fungible tokens appears insatiable as industry distances itself from crypto sector to avoid crackdown.

Russia looks to tap demand for power as crypto miners flood out of China

Plentiful electricity, cold climate are among drawcards as Chinese mine operators flee crackdown at home.

U.S. senators ask athletes to boycott digital yuan at Beijing Winter Olympics

Privacy concerns prompt call for Americans to avoid e-CNY as lawmakers point to use of WeChat app to ‘surveil, threaten and arrest Chinese citizens.’

Chinese fireworks artist Cai Guoqiang auctions first NFT for $2.5M

Chinese fireworks artist Cai Guoqiang has entered the world of non-fungible tokens, recently auctioning off his first NFT work for US$2.5 million. Fast facts Cai’s work “Transient Eternity — 101 Ignitions of Gunpowder Paintings,” commissioned by the Rockbund Art Museum in Shanghai, was auctioned on TR Lab for US$2.5 million after a 48-hour bidding period […]

China’s digital yuan moves a step closer with smart-contract technology

Central bank in apparent push for adoption ahead of Olympics as it doubles up on warning over non-state cryptocurrencies.
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Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post to make NFTs to preserve history

Hong Kong newspaper the South China Morning Post is making a foray into the world of non-fungible tokens in the latest move by a Hong Kong publisher to preserve content through blockchain technology. Fast facts The SCMP today released its “ARTIFACT” lite paper, a project designed to advocate “a standardized metadata structure for recording accounts […]

Chinese crypto news service forced to shutter site

Bishijie’s suspension deprives users of industry news and community forum as Beijing continues campaign targeting cryptocurrency sector.