Bank of Thailand Considers Blockchain for Economy Expansion
On July 12th, 2018, governor of the Bank of Thailand, Dr. Veerathai Santiprabhob, alluded to the use of blockchain technology as part of a national effort to further Thailand’s economic potential during his speech at the Bloomberg ASEAN Business Summit.
In the speech, Santiprabhob laid out the responsibility of the Bank of Thailand as being:
“the duty not only to preserve and maintain economic and financial stability, but also to develop our financial system so that it can effectively unlock Thailand’s economic potential, uplift productivity, and bring about more inclusive growth for the future”.
The governor plans to spur growth with the integration of technologies such as the blockchain. Of particular interest to Santiprabhob are blockchain use cases and include cross-border payments, supply chain financing, and document authentication.
The existing use of blockchain-enabled, cross-border payments by banks in Thailand, as the governor noted, has already resulted in improvements in regional financial connectivity. Santiprabhob also highlighted promising use cases of the blockchain in bolstering cyber-security, safeguarding financial information and curbing the number of fraudulent activities in Thailand.
This act by the governor follows previous moves made by the Thailand government in the cryptocurrency space. On March 30, 2018, Thailand’s Finance Minister, Apisak Tantivorawong, announced a new tax framework for the cryptocurrency market.
Measures outlined in this framework include a 7% valued added tax (VAT) on all crypto-trades and a 15% capital gains tax on returns made from trading cryptocurrencies. The 4th of July also saw Thai regulators announce measures pertaining to initial coin offerings that would be coming into effect on July 16, 2018.
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