by Kieran Smith
Coinone have announced that they will be opening up cryptocurrency trading in Indonesia, making them the first South Korean exchange to offer services outside the country.
According to the press release, the Indonesian branch opened for pre-registration on April 16 and will launch officially in June. It will initially support only six currencies; bitcoin (BTC), bitcoin cash (BCH), ether (ETH), ether classic (ETC), litecoin (LTC) and quantum (QAU), with plans to add more later.
Coinone CEO Alan Song stated:
“Coinone Indonesia wants to be the gateway that introduces people to the concept of blockchain and cryptocurrency […] we want to facilitate] access for users in Indonesia to have various types of digital assets or cryptocurrencies quickly and safely.”
More crucially, the move will also open up the exchange to a global clientele, who will be able to use the exchange after passing an ID verification process:
“Foreigners who are not Indonesian nationals can also apply… after the pre-registration period, foreigners need a separate examination process through the passport and non-face-to-face certification process.”
The South Korean exchange is the third-largest crypto exchange in the country after Upbit and Bithumb and will be celebrating the launch with an airdrop for 10,000 pre-registrants.
Home to over 260 million, Indonesia has the largest population in Southeast Asia. The largest exchange in the country at present is INDODAX, which sees a daily trading volume of $19,606,347, around half the average volume of Coinone.
The country is not known for its crypto-friendly regulation, but with such a large population it remains a fertile ground for expansion. The press release reads:
“Indonesia is a nation with high economic growth rate and the world’s fourth-largest population. Indonesia is also highly regarded for its potential growth in the Fintech industry. Coinone will lead the Indonesian market by providing secure and convenient services through Coinone Exchange in Indonesia.”
In January the central Indonesian Bank reasserted its anti-cryptocurrency stance, warning citizens against the selling, buying or trading of cryptocurrency.
The cautionary statement followed news in October 2017 that the Bank of Indonesia would not be accepting bitcoin as a form of payment. The central bank’s stance is thought to have caused the two largest bitcoin payment platforms, TokoBitcoin and BitBayar, to shut down.
Korean news source The Investor speaks of the promise of Indonesia for cryptocurrency and blockchain-backed businesses. Remarking on the country’s rapid economic growth, and burgeoning IT and financial industries.
Despite this, large swathes of the population remain unbanked – and the cash-based community could be ripe for large-scale bitcoin adoption.