Four of the top five South Korean banks have reportedly announced their plans to provide cryptocurrency services. The announcements came ahead of the crypto regulation that will soon go into effect in South Korea.
Largest Korean Banks Entering Crypto Space
South Korea’s largest banks have reportedly revealed that they will be providing cryptocurrency services. With the country’s crypto regulation going into effect next year, cryptocurrency has been attracting the attention of traditional financial institutions, particularly for custody services.
Shinhan Bank and Woori Bank have said that they are considering introducing cryptocurrency services ahead of the enforcement of the Special Money Act next year, local news outlet MTN reported Thursday. The Act regulates the crypto industry in South Korea in line with the standards set by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). Shinhan is the largest bank in South Korea with total group assets of $482 billion. Woori is the fifth-largest bank in the country.
NH Nonghyup Bank’s technology development team has also been working on a cryptocurrency custody service to allow the bank to store and manage customers’ cryptocurrencies. Nonghyup is the fourth-largest financial institution in South Korea by total assets.
KB Kookmin Bank applied for a patent earlier this year for a number of crypto services, including trading, financial reporting, asset management, consulting, advisory, over-the-counter brokerage, and custody. Last week, the bank signed an agreement with Hashed, Haechi Labs, and Cumberland Korea to further develop its crypto services. KB Kookmin is the second-largest bank in South Korea with total assets of $474 billion as of June.
Banks worldwide are increasingly warming up to the idea of providing crypto services. Recently, the U.S. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) officially stated that national banks and federal savings associations in the country are authorized to provide cryptocurrency custody services for customers. In Germany, about 40 banks have reportedly applied for a license from the country’s top financial regulator, the Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin), to provide cryptocurrency services.
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