No ICOs for You! Macau Regulator Bars Banks From Participating in Token Sales
Hot on the heels of China’s crackdown on ICOs, the Monetary Authority of Macau (AMCM) has announced that banks and non-bank payment institutions are proibido from participating in coin sales and related activities.
In a statement, the Macanese regulatory institution reminded financial institutions and related companies not to engage, “directly or indirectly,” in financial services connected to ICOs and cryptocurrencies:
Due to recent happenings of financing activities through issuance of tokens in the Mainland, financial institutions and non-bank payment institutions are prohibited explicitly by Mainland authorities from providing services for these tokens and virtual currencies. At the same time, this Authority also issued a notice on 20 September 2017 to remind all the banking and payment institutions in Macao not to participate in or provide, directly or indirectly, any financial services for the related activities.
The reason for the ban is pretty much the same as China’s. Much like their mainland counterparts, Macau regulators are concerned about the inherent risks involved in cryptocurrency trading, not to mention their potential use in money laundering and terrorism financing.
Unlike their mainland counterparts however, the AMCM has apparently been concerned about bitcoin for quite some time:
In June 2014, this Authority issued a press release to call the attention of the financial industry and the public that Bitcoin is a type of virtual commodity which is neither a legal tender nor a financial instrument subject to supervision.
The move also comes shortly after alleged former gang boss Wan Kuok-koi – alias “Broken tooth” – decided to back a multi-million dollar casino ICO. Coincidence? Seeing that the token sale appears to be more of a share sale but in cryptocurrency form, we think not.