Thailand’s SEC has declined to allow trading of spot Bitcoin ETFs, citing that foreign-approved Bitcoin ETFs are still in nascent stages and may not align with the economic needs of the Thai market.
The US securities market regulator’s recent approval of 11 Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs) has not swayed the Thai Securities and Exchange Commission to follow suit.
The Thai regulator remains cautious, believing these ETFs, which have gained traction in foreign markets, may not be suitable for the Thai economic landscape at this stage.
A report by Bangkok Post highlighted the Thai SEC’s stance. “We are monitoring these developments, but currently, there is no plan to permit the establishment of spot Bitcoin ETFs in Thailand,” said a representative from the Thai SEC.
Despite this, Thai securities brokerages are encouraging investors to consider investing in US-based Bitcoin ETFs. The Thai SEC, however, emphasizes that investment advice provided to clients must be appropriate and in line with products available in Thailand.
Bitcoin ETFs offer a pathway for both retail and institutional investors to invest in Bitcoin via traditional brokerage accounts, simplifying the investment process by eliminating the need for crypto wallets and exchanges.
The US’s move to approve Bitcoin ETFs marks a significant shift following a decade of reluctance due to various risks. This decision placed the US alongside other nations, such as Canada, Australia, and Switzerland, which had previously introduced Bitcoin ETFs. Notably, the US had Bitcoin futures-based ETFs since 2021.
Apart from Thailand, the South Korean financial market regulator confirmed that it would not permit the trading of Bitcoin ETFs on its domestic market.
In related news, Binance launched its Thailand-specific exchange on Jan. 16 in collaboration with Gulf Innova. However, Thailand’s large expatriate community faces restrictions in accessing this platform.
The process of registration and KYC procedures necessitates the use of a Thai national digital ID (NDID). It’s important to note that the Thai government does not grant these digital IDs to foreign individuals residing within the country.
This move adds to Thailand’s nuanced position in the crypto space. Contrary to being labeled as “crypto-friendly” by some Western media, the Thai government announced in September that it would tax overseas crypto trading income starting January 2024.