Korea Government: Buying digital assets is reckless, and young generation is wrong. We the senior generation should correct them.
On 22 April 2012, the Chairman of Korea’s Financial Services Commission (FSC), Eun Sung-soo, told the country’s parliament that “digital assets fluctuate 20% a day and do not have intrinsic value, and buying these digital asset is reckless… The young generation is taking a wrong path, and we as the senior generation should correct them and tell them they are wrong”.
My jaw was literally dropped when I first saw this news. It’s almost like saying “you the brainless people, just do what I tell you to do!” Although many government officers may share this thought deep inside their minds, it’s really rare for them to be so honest and say it in front of the public. Considering the Korea government is democratically elected, it’s really hard to imagine its senior officer would have openly made such an arrogant statement.
Well Mr. Eun… don’t young people in your country have freedom to decide how their own money are spent?
Korea has a one of the biggest crypto community in Asia, and crypto investment is very popular among its younger generation (especially among those 20s and 30s). As you can imagine, many Koreans are hugely surprised by this statement, which demonstrated simplistic view of their government over the fast-growing world of crypto and blockchain. It sparked lots of angers, especially among the younger generation. As of today, more than 150,000 Korean have joined a petitioned to the country’s President that call for Mr. Eun to step down as the Chairman of FSC. The Korea Presidential Office will be obliged to respond if more than 200,000 Koreans eventually join this petition.
The statement did not only tell us how much the some government officers are full of themselves, but also showed how hostile the Korean government is over crypto. Back in Nov 2020, the Korea FSC introduced a new AML regulation which requires all crypto exchanges in the country to be registered as Virtual Asset Service Provider (VASP), and also to follow a long list of AML regulatory requirements that are widely criticized by the crypto industry as overly demanding or even unrealistic. As a result of the strict requirements, the FSC did not even receive a single VASP application so far! (FYI — there are around 200 crypto exchanges in Korea). Obviously the FSC was pretty pissed off by the lack of response from the crypto community, and has threaten to shut down every single exchange in the country.
Isn’t it extra-ordinary? Mr. Eun threatens to shut down the whole multi-billion dollar industry in his own country!