After a local company defrauded investors in Vietnam approximately $658 million, the top authorities have started strengthening the cryptocurrency ban imposed last year. The company in question, Modern Tech, marketed their crypto coins (Pincoin and iFan) in a deal where they promised the investors monthly bonuses after they invested a minimum of $1K through the purchase of Pincoin and or iFan.
As sweet as the deal seemed during the token purchase stage, it failed to mature because the prices of the coins heavily dropped in prices after purchases were made. This led close to $658 million to evaporate into thin air leaving thousands who had bought into the deal stranded.
To address the issue, Vuong Dinh, the country’s deputy prime minister, has directed 6 ministries to investigate the alleged fraud with immediate effect.
Although the government is extending a hand to those stranded in the cryptocurrency scam, it had banned cryptos including Bitcoin since October last year with an official statement of the ban issued by the country’s central bank on 30th October 2017.
At the beginning of this month, Nguyen Xuan, Vietnam’s prime minister, directed the country’s central bank together with the local financial regulations to be more vigilant in all activities related to virtual currencies. This included the ministry of justice which is required to draft regulations that will govern the virtual coins.
The call by the prime minister to develop strict measures around cryptocurrencies has seen some of the crypto investors to consider relocating to crypto friendly countries. “Since the government wants to tighten regulations on cryptocurrency, I may not invest in cryptocurrency in Vietnam, maybe… in other countries,” said one crypto investor in Vietnam.
The ministry of public security has also been asked to come up with measures that it will use to curb illicit use of digital money e.g. money laundering.
With government bodies joining forces to enforce the cryptocurrency ban, will they be able to prevent their countrymen/women from buying and holding cryptos, even if they don’t use it as a payment method?
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