Source: Vientiane Times
The Bank of the Lao PDR (BOL) has issued licences authorising two companies to trade in cryptocurrencies, namely Lao Digital Assets Exchange (LDX), a joint venture between the AIF Group and the Phongsupthavy Group, and Bitqik, a subsidiary of the Simuong Group.
LDX and Bitqik are now the only licensed and regulated institutions in Laos that can offer full brokerage and trading services in cryptocurrencies and other digital assets, both within Lao and the region.
The two trading platforms are expected to provide full services in April, in full compliance with the regulations of the BOL in terms of cybersecurity and client protection, to ensure the seamless and secure use of digital assets.
The Governor of the Bank of the Lao PDR,Mr Sonexay Sitphaxay, said the central bank had put a lot of time and resources into the regulatory and legal tender process, working with the business community and government-related agencies to ensure that investors are protected and are confident about using licensed cryptocurrency exchange platforms in Laos.
The bank has also put in place measures to mitigate risks to the economy that may arise from the trade in crypto assets.
BOL will work closely with the two licensed exchange platforms and monitor their activities to protect investors and improve the existing regulations.
Director General of the bank’s Payment System Department, Mr Soulisack Thamnouvong, said the bank had received more than 30 applications for a Crypto Asset Exchange Platform licence, but only the AIF Group, together with the Phongsubthavy Group and the Simuong Group, were well prepared and qualified to operate these platforms.
These three companies were also the first to submit applications to the Bank of the Lao PDR. All qualified digital and crypto asset investors can now use their bank accounts with BIC, APB, JDB, BCEL and other Lao banks for the purposes of investment and trade and will no longer have to pay very high fees when using credit cards or using bank accounts in other countries for other trading platforms.