The State Bank of Vietnam passed a law recently banned using Bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency as a payment method within the country’s borders. The country also forbade merchants from providing cryptocurrency payment services to the Vietnamese public and said that those caught would face persecution under the law.
The ban in Vietnam follows similar bans enacted by the Chinese and South Korean governments. The announcement was unexpected, as previously the Vietnamese government had claimed they were looking at options to legalize cryptocurrency usage in the country. While the government says the ban is in order to prevent the use of cryptocurrency for unlawful activities, it results in dramatically curtailing the growth of cryptocurrencies in the country, even for legitimate purposes.
The ban on cryptocurrency payments in Vietnam has affected ICO operations in the country severely. While Vietnamese government officials have not spoken officially about ICOs or their regulation, analysts speculate that ICOs, too, could face a similar ban, with the government stepping in when it comes to prospective ICOs in the country.
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