South Korea’s Second Biggest City Wants to Create a Local Cryptocurrency

July 1, 2019
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Busan, South Korea’s second most-populous city after Seoul, is considering the launch of a local cryptocurrency, Korean tech news publication ETnews reports July 1.

According to the report, Busan city authorities are seeking to develop a blockchain-based digital currency project in collaboration with BNK Busan Bank, a subsidiary of local holding company BNK Financial Group.

Specifically, Busan is reportedly developing a crypto project in the form of stablecoin, a cryptocurrency pegged 1:1 to the local currency in the BNK Busan bank account. By issuing a local digital currency, Busan expects to revive the local economy, as well as to secure the leading position in blockchain, the report notes.

The news comes amid the upcoming establishment of South Korea’s blockchain regulation-free zone, for which Busan was selected as the preferred bidder along with its competitor Jeju Province, as reported in April 2019. As a part of the potential designation, Busan is reportedly going to promote blockchain tech in multiple industries, as well as to provide a basis for cryptos, particularly including initial coin offerings (ICOs).

In April, South Korea’s Ministry of Small and Medium Businesses (SMEs) and Startups said that the government plans to provide “extensive support if Busan develops its own blockchain-based currency structure or token economy.”

Earlier in February 2019, Busan signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with blockchain company Hyundai Pay with the purpose of promoting blockchain industry through “contribution to the development of local ICT industry through mutual growth with related start-up businesses.”

Previously, South Korea’s government revealed plans to invest $3.5 million to create a blockchain-enabled virtual power plant in the city of Busan.

Meanwhile, recently, major local commercial lender KB Kookmin Bank signed an agreement with blockchain tech firm Atomrigs Lab to jointly explore digital asset management and protection solutions.

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