- According to a recent report, over 20% of South Korean lawmakers traded nearly $100 million worth of cryptocurrency in the past three years.
- Bitcoin was the most popular cryptocurrency among Korean politicians, but their portfolios also included over 100 other digital assets.
- The South Korean government has enacted new laws requiring public officials to report their cryptocurrency holdings starting in 2024.
- The five largest South Korean cryptocurrency exchanges will also implement “information provision systems” to ensure Korean politicians comply.
Cryptocurrencies have become a hot topic in South, not only among the general public but also among the political elite.
According to a recent report, over 20% of the nation’s parliamentarians have made significant gains from their investments in digital assets during the past three years.
These astonishing figures have now prompted the Korean government to set up crypto transparency laws for its citizens and officials, going forward.
The crypto craze in the National Assembly
The public uproar around a local Democratic Party politician who failed to disclose his possession of Wemix (WEMIX) tokens valued at least $4.5 million caused the South Korean Anti-Corruption and Civil Rights Commission to take action.
The commission conducted a three-month investigation into the digital asset transaction records of all 298 serving members of the South parliament and released the findings in a report on December 29, 2023.
And according to the findings of the study, 18 lawmakers (or 6% of the total), have records of digital asset possession in the last three years. Additionally, another 11 lawmakers (or 3.7% of the total), account for the entire trade volume of crypto in lawmakers’ accounts.
It gets crazier.
The report also highlights that the politicians traded a total of 125.6 billion Korean won ($97.6 million) worth of crypto, with Bitcoin being the most popular option.
The portfolios of the other officials also contained about 107 more kinds of assets, demonstrating a wide spectrum of preferences and interests among South K politicians
The Korean Government Introduces Transparency Laws
The report also emphasized the need for increased accountability and transparency in the Korean crypto landscape, particularly for politicians.
In response to the report’s findings, the South K government also enacted a law in May 2023, requiring nearly 6000 civil workers to report their crypto holdings through the Public Official Ethics System as from 2024.
The law also requires that the five biggest South Korean crypto exchanges: Upbit, Bithumb, Coinone, Korbit, and Gopax, set up separate “information provision systems” to make it easier for public officials to register information about their crypto holdings.
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