The South Korean justice minister said on Thursday that a bill to ban all cryptocurrency operations in the country is being prepared.
“There are big concerns about virtual currencies and the Ministry of Justice is basically preparing a bill to ban the trade of cryptocurrencies through exchanges,” Park Sang-ki said at a press conference, according to the press office. of the ministry.
The news has made the value of Bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies have fallen this morning more than 10%. Park added that he could not reveal more specific details about the proposed closure of commercial exchanges of cryptocurrencies in the country, adding that several government agencies would work together to implement several measures.
The main cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and ethereum have a significantly higher price on the stock exchanges of the Korean country than in other parts of the world. That difference in price is called a “Kimchi premium” by many traders. In fact, earlier this week, the industrial data provider CoinMarketCap tweeted that it would exclude some South Korean exchanges in price calculations due to “extreme divergence in prices from the rest of the world” and the “limited opportunity for arbitration”. Exchanges that were eliminated from the price calculation included Bithumb, Korbit and Coinone.
This morning we excluded some Korean exchanges in price calculations due to the extreme divergence in prices from the rest of the world and limited arbitrage opportunity. We are working on better tools to provide users with the averages that are most relevant to them.
— CoinMarketCap (@CoinMarketCap) January 8, 2018
The news of the Justice Minister comes after police and tax agencies recorded the country’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges this week for alleged tax evasion, people familiar with the investigation told Reuters, according to CNBC sources.