Cryptocurrency regulation has always been a rather controversial topic. It is, by default, nearly impossible to effectively regulate an industry which is decentralized and has no central entity. Even so, officials in Thailand are looking to make inroads in this area. They will meet with blockchain and cryptocurrency experts this week to discuss future laws and regulatory measures.
THE FUTURE OF BITCOIN REGULATION IN THAILAND
Asian countries have taken somewhat controversial approaches to regulating Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in the past few months. China has taken the far more aggressive stance by banning all CNY-based trading. Japan legitimized Bitcoin as a payment method last year, which allowed the world’s leading cryptocurrency to gain more mainstream traction.
Which way Thailand will go in this regard remains to be determined. The country’s regulators will sit down with cryptocurrency and blockchain experts this week and determine how best to handle things moving forward.
There will also be an open dialogue regarding the government’s tax laws, which have a few companies on edge as of right now. More specifically, there are growing fears of a high level of taxation on cryptocurrency transactions. That would not be uncommon in Asia, as some countries charge taxes of up to 30% on trading activity these days.
If such a tax were introduced in Thailand, it is possible that companies would leave the country in search of greener pastures. For the time being, the Thai government is leaning toward introducing a 15% capital gains tax on cryptocurrency earnings. While that is a steep amount, it may not be the final percentage.
There are also concerns over additional VAT-related regulations and specific taxation guidelines for corporations, including exchanges and wallet providers. With the Thai Fintech Association leading the debate, it will be interesting to see how this story unfolds. That group wants to ensure that cryptocurrency can thrive in the coming years, but if the government has other ideas, that will not necessarily happen. Improper tax measures need to be avoided at all costs, and it’s up to the Thai regulators to render the final verdict.