The Magazine for Asian Investors
The Asian crypto community is becoming more and more important and is growing rapidly. With various centers in which crypto fans can spread, such as Kazakhstan, which has attracted many crypto miners from China after its ban, or Thailand, which already accepts cryptocurrencies for the purchase of goods in some areas.
Also, many crypto exchanges have their origin in Asia especially Hong Kong which is the birthplace of exchanges like FTX, Crypto.com, BitMEX, Bitfinex, and OSL. In addition, the Stablecoin Tether also originated in Hong Kong. However, Hong Kong as well as other developed Asian places have introduced more and more regulations for the crypto scene which discourages companies that are developing digital assets. This is what happened when the FTX exchange moved to the Bahamas last year. FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried, arguably the richest crypto entrepreneur at the moment, has stated from the new headquarters, “It’s really important that we have long-term regulatory guidance and clarity,” and “Hong Kong has not yet drafted the actual bill…there’s uncertainty about exactly how that is going to turn out.”
Knowing that China, whose influence on Hong Kong continues to grow, has eliminated their entire crypto community, he probably saw the coming danger specifically for Hong Kong.
The view further south does not make the situation better. Singapore, which many crypto entrepreneurs had their eyes on, is taking a critical view of the crypto community, especially with new regulations from officials. This happened at the end of 2021 after Binance officially withdrew its application for a cryptocurrency exchange in Singapore and closed down its Singapore exchange. Especially since the Central Bank of Singapore is critical of cryptocurrencies and sees them as a high-risk asset that should be more strictly regulated. But there are also companies that want to try their luck in Singapore like the platform crypto.com that moved its headquarters from Hong Kong to Singapore. Over 170 crypto service providers have already completed an application to the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and 70 providers have been granted a temporary permit but without an official license.
The question that remains now is where will the Asian hub for cryptocurrencies be?
In the Middle East, Dubai already seems to be establishing its supremacy in the field of digitalization. Dubai has already attracted crypto fans from all over the world with different shows and exhibitions. In addition, Dubai has already introduced its own crypto zone in its world trade center, which is also supported by the crypto platform Binance.
Singapore is an obvious choice as the country is already a financial hub in Asia but is seen controversially in the crypto community due to growing regulations.
The crypto community in South Korea is growing rapidly and recently made headlines after officials resigned from government service and turned to the crypto industry. This has caused so much outrage in the country as the officials previously regulated the crypto industry and are now becoming active themselves.
Kazakhstan is now home to many crypto miners who have been expelled from China, but the current administration is concerned about the energy needs of these farms and has threatened to shut them down for the winter if the energy is not sufficient. Moreover, after the recent riots in the country that resulted in the shutdown of the Internet in the country, Kazakhstan does not see digging for Bitcoin as a major priority at the moment. That is why the power for Bitcoin farms has been cut off again and again in the recent past.
In Thailand, the crypto community is also growing rapidly. Many miners have also come to Thailand from China. In addition, the government is trying to attract crypto fans with so-called crypto tourism. With the flagship unicorn Bitkub, the country already has a representative that is spreading internationally. The crypto platform is becoming increasingly popular in the country and has now attracted banks. Siam Commercial Bank (SCB) has therefore bought a whopping 51% stake in Bitkub last year. Its cryptocurrency KUB Coin is also gaining international prominence with its recent listing on CoinEx. In addition, regional coffee shops and stores have already started accepting cryptocurrencies for purchase, which was a huge step for the country. Moreover, in the country, you can already pay in some coffees with cryptocurrencies or buy real estate with cryptos.
The Asian crypto community continues to grow and it remains to be seen where the hub will be. This will also depend on regulations and support from governments and the population.