ForexMinute.com – When Bitcoin is still battling with the developed economies from the west, it is being welcomed with open arms somewhere in the east – to a place world knows as Thailand. The land of exotic locales and attractive lifestyle is one of the major tourist destinations. Little we knew that it will bring the same hospitality to Bitcoin by approving its two fully-legal exchanges.
It doesn’t mean the country is proactively adapting Bitcoin as an alternative coin. The Thailand government has had their differences with the concept, mostly for its decentralization and lack of regulatory framework. They even took some stiff actions including the dismantling of country’s leading Bitcoin exchanges. The Thailand’s Minister of Finance later cleared that Bitcoin is out of their jurisdiction, unless it is being used for illegal trades.
The numbers however tricked the government decision. Reportedly, the number of Bitcoin users and merchants in Thailand increased exponentially in recent times, while thriving mostly on the illegal exchanges for conducting their operations. It was only when the officials decided to go lenient on the cryptocurrency and allowed its trading strictly to/from Thai Baht. Eventually, the predictions, saying Thailand government was going to ban cryptocurrencies, were put to rest.
The country is now home to two fully-legal Bitcoin exchanges – both of whom are registered and approved by the Hua Khwang District Office. The websites of the respective exchanges are also live and Thailand-based traders are using it minus hassles. On the flip side, Bitcoin is still treated as commodity by the government; thus making it unworthy to be accepted as a legal tender.
Conclusion: It seems that Thailand government is a “funambulist” when it comes to Bitcoin and other altcoins as well – balancing between people and traditions. However, they have regularly changed their stands regarding its adaption as a full-fledged and legal cryptocurrency. The launch of dark wallets and other anonymity offering coins are further weakening the chances of Bitcoin to be fully legalized in the country.
However, we cannot ignore Thailand to be a potential investment hub for cryptocurrencies. With most of the country’s income coming from the tourism sector, the country can support entrepreneurs who are willing to accept digital currencies as a form of payment. When a major travelling company such as Expedia openly favors the Bitcoin’s potential, let alone accepts it, it certainly proves to be a testimony that should considered by countries like Thailand.
More importantly, Bitcoin economy is getting whopping investments from leading businesses and startup experts. Thailand can offer them a comfortable place to run their businesses, away from the hassle of the US, China and Europe.
What’s your stand on it? Please discuss.
To contact the reporter of the story: Yashu Gola at firstname.lastname@example.org
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