Philippines to Allow Cryptocurrency Exchanges to Operate but Slots Limited

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Cryptocurrency exchanges will now have a chance to tap the Philippines’ cryptocurrency market. The Southeast Asian country recently announced that it plans to issue up to 25 licenses to companies that want to set up their operations inside its special economic zones.

CEZA Will Allow 25 Crypto Exchanges

The announcement was made by Raul L. Lambino, Administrator, and CEO of the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA), via a post on CEZA’s website. Established in 1995, the Cagayan Special Economic Zone and Freeport is one among the many special economic zones set up by the Philippine government to encourage foreign firms to put up shops in the country by offering attractive incentives and advantages.

The cryptocurrency exchanges to be granted the 25 licenses by CEZA will operate inside the economic zone located in Cagayan, a province in the northern island of Luzon. The exchanges will be required to invest at least $1 million within two years. There is also a limit on the sublicenses available to each exchange for a maximum of 20 to 30 brokers or traders.

Lambino explained why CEZA put up the $1 million investment requirement:

“We do not want the Philippines to be a haven (for scammers) even if these scams are happening abroad. That’s why through our probity and integrity check we can determine if their transactions are just designed to entice unsuspecting people to invest in Bitcoin or whatever crypto coin that is a fraud,”

ICOs Must Be Asset-Backed, Not Available to Philippine Residents

Lambino hinted that CEZA might ask for additional requirements if a cryptocurrency exchange plans to have initial coin offerings (ICOs). He also explained why CEZA would be strict when it comes to ICOs:

“If they have ICO (initial coin offering) we will have to find if their ICO is asset-backed because this what we are saying that there are many scammers. If they offer in the market their initial (digital) coin, they maybe able to convince 50 unsuspecting investors and promise them the sun and the moon. This is the Ponzi scheme. We are not going to allow it.”

In addition, ICOs will not be available to citizens residing in the Philippines. According to Lambino:

“In our system, no residents of the Philippines will be able to enter because we are going to block their (exchanges’) IP address.”

Philippine Crypto Market Is Steady

Despite the downturn of the market, the cryptocurrency market in the Philippines has stabilized in recent months. According to data from the country’s central bank, monthly volume remained steady and hovered near the $40 million mark, reports Business World.

For the first quarter of 2018, monthly volume averaged at $36.74 million per month, which is only a slight deviation from 2017’s fourth-quarter average of $38.27 million per month.

Philippines to Allow Cryptocurrency Exchanges to Operate but Slots Limited was originally found on [blokt] – Blockchain, Bitcoin & Cryptocurrency News.