South Korea reportedly moves to ban all cryptocurrency trading, markets tumble

South Korea’s Justice Minister has reportedly claimed that a new bill is being prepared that could effectively ban cryptocurrency trading within the country.

On the back of a report that indicated that South Korea would pursue joint cryptocurrency regulations in tandem with Japan and China, the nation’s Justice Minister has now reportedly quipped that a new bill might effectively ban all cryptocurrency trading within the country.

Justice Minister Park Sang-ki reportedly delivered the statement at a recent press conference, saying “There are great concerns regarding virtual currencies and justice ministry is basically preparing a bill to ban cryptocurrency trading through exchanges .

Read:  Bitcoin ‘ought to be outlawed’, says former chief economist of the World Bank

The Minister refused to clarify his remarks beyond offering that the decision had been met after consultation with other government agencies including South Korea’s finance industry, and that various government agencies would work together to implement several measures to ban cryptocurrency trading altogether.

The move would apparently seek to reign-in the highly speculative nature of cryptocurrency trading within South Korea -Korean Financial Services Commission chairman Choi Jong-ku told reporters yesterday that South Korea, Japan, and China would ‘co-operate’ in efforts to reign in speculative investments.

The nation’s government has become increasingly wary of the speculation surrounding digital currencies.

South Korean financial authorities recently prohibited both foreigners and underage investors from investing in cryptocurrencies while its Financial Services Commission may soon be empowered to shut down cryptocurrency exchanges.

The Commission previously indicated on Facebook that “The government had warned several times that virtual coins cannot play a role as actual currency and could result in high losses due to excessive volatility.”

The cryptocurrency market tumbled following the remarks, where Bitcoin plummeted by more than 12 percent. Ripple’s XRP, similarly, withdrew to levels below the $2 USD mark.

We’ll update this story as news develops.

Read: Jamie Dimon ‘regrets’ calling Bitcoin a fraud, says ‘the blockchain is real’

What are your thoughts? What impact could an all-out ban on trading in South Korea have on the wider cryptocurrency market? Be sure to let us know your opinion in the comments below!

Follow Bryan Smith on Twitter: @bryansmithSA

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