The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of Thailand is transitioning towards more crypto-friendly regulations with the publication of an updated framework earlier this month. This framework aims to foster the growth of the digital asset market while ensuring investor protection.
The SEC regulates cryptocurrencies under the Digital Asset Businesses Decree, focusing on areas such as sales, trading, and initial coin offerings (ICOs). Digital asset businesses operating in Thailand must obtain licenses and comply with the rules set forth by the SEC.
The updated framework introduces several key changes, including the removal of retail investors’ limits for tokens backed by assets like real estate or infrastructure. Previously, retail investors were limited to 300,000 baht (approximately $8,400) per offering in asset-backed ICOs. This change is expected to widen the market for a broader range of investors and support the nation’s digital asset market development.
The SEC update also requires dedicated entities to be set up for custodial wallet management. These providers must be subsidiaries of publicly listed companies with a track record in secure custody of securities. This measure aims to enhance the security of digital assets held by exchanges and custodians.
Despite these progressive steps, the SEC has decided not to allow spot Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs) in Thailand. This approach is similar to South Korea’s, which has also prohibited spot Bitcoin ETFs in its domestic markets. The United States recently approved 10 spot Bitcoin ETFs in a historic milestone on January 10.