South Korean banks Woori and Shinhan have just announced their intention to introduce “cryptocurrency services”. This means that Four of the five largest banks in the country, valued at more than $ 1.2 trillion, are now ready to launch cryptocurrency services.
Each of the banks strive to hold and manage cryptocurrencies for customers. Both Shinhan and Woori announced their plans in direct response to the amended Law on Special Financial Transaction Information, which will change the legislation on crypto assets.which will come into effect next year.
The bench Shinhan already announced plans to store cryptocurrencies in 2017, but these were foiled by the government in January 2018..
NH Nonghyup Bank and Kookmin Bank have already coordinated blockchain teams to implement cryptocurrency storage functions;; Nonghyup is the most advanced and is expected to offer “institutional” services in the coming months.
Too little too late?
Blockchain experts in the country have raised concerns that these steps are “too little, too late”.citing US institutions that are way ahead of the South Korean banking sector. The head of the Blockchain Research Center in Dongguk University Park, Sung-joon said he was “concerned” that this could jeopardize the nation’s financial “competitiveness”.::
“Other countries are moving in this direction very quickly. However, South Korea lacks a legal system, so progress has been slower than expected. “
Without “institutional support”, he suggested that this drive for cryptocurrency custody may not lead to full integration..
Korea loves cryptocurrencies
Although the financial sector has been criticized for its slow assimilation of blockchain technology, other industries have incorporated it into their solutions more quickly. Over a million people launched a new blockchain-based digital driver’s license app in just three months. One of the largest banks in South Korea, KEB Hana Bank has partnered with Korea Expressway Corporation to implement a blockchain-based toll system for the country’s highways.
And this week the news spread that Seongnam’s payment program is expanding with the issuance of new digital gift certificates, and Busan’s beachgoers can pay for services with Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH)..