The Hanoitimes - Vietnamese Government has instructed related administrative agencies to finalize legal framework to manage and deal with electronic money, virtual assets and currencies.
Under the instruction of the Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue, ministries and ministerial level agencies are responsible to propose measures to manage some specific economic sectors in January 2018. Notably, the Deputy Minister requested the Ministry of Justice to cooperate with the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV) to finalize legal framework to manage virtual currencies such as bitcoin in Vietnam and finishes the compilation of legal documents in conformity with the Decision No.1255/QD-TTg dated August 21, 2017. Afterwards, the Ministry of Justice will have to collect opinions from relevant ministries. A report on the progress must be submitted to the government for consideration before the end of January.
Virtual currencies, especially bitcoin, have sparked fever worldwide. In Vietnam, the bitcoin drew significant market attention despite experts’ warning about its risks and the lack of a management framework. At present, Ministry of Justice is reviewing existing laws on the management of virtual assets and currencies in Vietnam.
Bitcoin is valued at nearly US$ 17,000 per coin after experienced a drop as much as US$8,000 in a matter of days over Christmas after a manic rally in December.
As such, there have been some mixed opinions with regard to the management of virtual currencies, namely bitcoin or litecoin. Previously on October 30, SBV said virtual currencies are not a lawful means of payment, there fore, “as from January 1, 2018, the act of issuing, providing and using illegal means of payment (including bitcoin and other similar virtual currency) may be subject to prosecution in accordance with the provision of Article 206 of the Penal Code 2015” stated in SBV’s statement released on October 28. However, in reality, illegal transaction of bitcoin is still going on.
As a ministry –level body under the administration of the government responsible for managing monetary policies, supervising financial institutions and the country’s foreign reserves, SBV urged citizens and enterprises to restrain from making transaction in relation to bitcoin and other crypto currencies. Given its extreme volatility and lack of regulation, crypto currencies in general and bitcoin in particular can pose potential risks to investors. On the other hand, as claimed by the SBV, bitcoin transactions are anonymous and can be used for money laundering, drug trafficking, tax evasion and illegal payment.
Currently, the market capitalization for all crypto currencies passed an all-time high of US$ 700 billion, while bitcoin’s market capitalization stands at US$ 285 billion, having deflated from the record high of US$ 320 billion witnessed last months. As of present, bitcoin is valued at nearly US$ 17,000 per coin after experienced a drop as much as US$ 8,000 in a matter of days over Christmas after a manic rally in December, according to coinmarket.com.
Market capitalization is a basic valuation metric which multiplies the value of an asset — usually a share in a company — by the amount of that asset in circulation. The total market cap of the crypto market has spiked higher in recent months as many of the more than 1,300 crypto currencies in circulation rose.