No Ban On Cryptocurrency, Says Malaysian Official

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Malaysia’s deputy finance minister has clarified the country’s position on cryptocurrencies. There will not be a blanket ban against crypto.

Local media is reporting that the Malaysian deputy finance minister, Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani, has said that his nation will not make cryptocurrencies illegal and that regulations are still being considered.

“Financial innovation will not only enhance productivity of economic activities, but also make financial intermediation more seamless,” Johari told The Malaysian Reserve, going on to say, “This is particularly relevant to recent innovations like bitcoin.”

Contrary to more stringent positions taken by other countries, Johari’s comments depict a measured approach to cryptocurrency. He hopes that Malaysia can reap the economic benefits that come with the technology while minimizing associated risks to consumers.

While the Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) doesn’t currently have crypto trade regulations in place, authorities are collecting information in order to make educated decisions on how to best protect the public without stifling innovation.    

“The government is fully aware of the need to strike a balance between public interest and integrity of the financial system,” Johari continued, “similar to any financial and investment schemes, there is a need to have proper regulation and supervision to ensure any risk associated with such schemes are effectively contained.”

Johari further stated that BNM will be working to ensure that digital currency exchanges will report suspicious transactions and comply with Know-Your-Customer requirements.

Johari’s overarching emphasis was that all FinTech innovations, such as cryptocurrencies and electronic wallets, should be included in Malaysia’s digitalization roadmap.


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