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Asia Crypto Regulation: India Signals Investor Trends, Indonesia and Thailand Reveal New Rules

Last Updated March 13, 2024 3:28 PM
Shraddha Sharma
Last Updated March 13, 2024 3:28 PM
By Shraddha Sharma
Verified by Peter Henn

Key Takeaways

  • Indian securities regulator introduces same-day trade settlements to compete with the crypto appeal.
  • Block expands into India with Bitcoin wallet.
  • Indonesia’s OJK mandates new regulations for crypto.
  • Thailand approves tax exemptions for crypto earnings.
  • Singapore strengthens its position as a crypto hub with new payments license.

Asian countries are adapting their financial and regulatory sectors to accommodate the cryptocurrency market. From India’s move towards instant trade settlements to Indonesia and Thailand’s regulatory adjustments and tax incentives, the changes reflect growing integration of digital assets into conventional finance.

Asia’s crypto stance has, potentially, positioned the continent above the west in the global digital economy.

India Pushes Instant Settlement

India’s market regulator, SEBI, will allow  instant trade settlements by the end of March. The aim is to align traditional markets with the speed and efficiency of cryptocurrency transactions.

SEBI Chair Madhabi Puri Buch revealed plans of optional T+0 trade settlement cycle instead of the current T+1 where settlements take one business day after the trade. India doesn’t have specific guidelines for cryptocurrencies yet, but the central bank acknowledges them for taxation purposes.

Meanwhile, the shift in the securities rule based on crypto appeal also underlines that institutions are acknowledging the massive digital asset market in the region.

Indonesia Embraces Technological Rules

The Financial Services Authority (OJK) of Indonesia has introduced  regulations to help technological innovation within the financial sector, with these rules extending to cryptocurrencies from January 2025. The move aims to create an integrated fintech ecosystem, reflecting the rapid growth and evolving business models within the sector.

Meanwhile, discussions on crypto taxation highlight the government’s efforts to balance regulatory oversight with industry growth. In February, the Indonesian agency overseeing commodity and futures trading, Bappebti, asked  the country’s Finance Ministry to review the rules about taxes on cryptocurrency transactions. Since May 2022, Indonesia has been charging  0.11% on every purchase or sale of cryptocurrencies on approved trading platforms, plus an extra income tax of 0.1% on these transactions.

Thailand’s Crypto Tax Exemptions

Thailand has taken a proactive step to encourage the use of investment tokens by approving tax exemptions for crypto earnings. The decision aims to eliminate the double taxation scenario for investment token holders, as reported  by the Bangkok Post. The industry says that it has facilitated a more attractive environment for fundraising through digital assets.

Meanwhile, Singapore continues to solidify its reputation as a leading crypto hub. The country recently saw  OKX’s domestic subsidiary receiving in-principle approval for a payments license. The authorization enables businesses to offer digital payment token and cross-border money transfer services, further establishing Singapore’s position as a central player in the Asian cryptocurrency market.

Asia Crypto Rules Ahead of the West

The regulatory situation in Asia is rapidly evolving. The region is moving to accommodate cryptocurrencies despite some countries like India taking a more cautious approach.

India enhancing the efficiency of its financial markets, Indonesia and Thailand introducing regulatory and tax reforms, and Singapore advancing its crypto hub status. Most countries are laying the groundwork for a more integrated digital finance sector if compared to countries like the US.

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