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Thai securities regulator bans NFTs and memecoins

By Aaron Woolner

04:36, 14 June 2021

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Dogecoin has been banned by the Thai securities regulator

Thailand’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Board has banned crypto exchanges from trading a range of assets including non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and meme coins. 

On Saturday 12 June the SEC published a statement which outlined new rules which bar local exchanges from offering utility tokens and certain cryptocurrencies. This includes Dogecoin, a cryptocurrency that has risen 12,000% in 2021 alone and whose symbol is a Shiba Inu dog. 

The SEC ruling now outlaws digital currencies that have “no clear objective or substance or underlying [sic], and whose price is running on social media trends”.

Antisocial move

As part of a broader rejection of social media influence on the digital currency market, Thai regulators have also barred Fan Tokens, defined as assets tokenised by influencers’ fame. 

Alongside banning NFTs, the SEC has also prohibited the use of exchange tokens. Issued by bourses such as Binance, these tokens give their holders benefits such as reducing trading fees.

The rules were imposed retrospectively from 11 June. Exchanges have 30 days to amend their listing or see Thai authorities take actions including forced delisting. 

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Market boom

The Thai authority’s move to clamp down on cryptocurrency trading comes after the activity has boomed in the Kingdom, with the SEC’s own data showing a near seven-fold increase from THB18bn ($578m) in November to 124bn baht in February, Bloomberg reported in April.  

Meanwhile, leading domestic cryptocurrency exchange platform Bitkub themselves reported a daily turnover of 4.2bn baht throughout February, a jump of nearly 40% from the previous month.

Bitkub’s CFO and co-founder Atichanan Pulges told Bloomberg that attempts by the SEC to rein in the market would simply see trade move offshore. 


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Read more: Dogecoin climbs on Coinbase listing enthusiasm

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