Macau Cracks Down On Cyber Currency

News from China

Monetary Authority of Macau prohibits financial institutions from providing financial services to businesses involved in virtual currency

Media reports from Macau indicate that the island’s Monetary Authority has cracked down on the use of virtual currencies, issuing a statement prohibiting local financial institutions from providing financial services to businesses involved in virtual currency transactions.

The Authority’s advisory reads:

“Due to recent happenings of financing activities through issuance of tokens in the Mainland, financial institutions and on-bank payment institutions are prohibited explicitly by Mainland authorities from providing services for these tokens and virtual currencies.”

Media speculation is that a recent proposed Initial Coin Offering in Hong Kong by Macau-linked Dragon Corporation may have prompted the warning; Dragon Corporation is attempting to use the ICO to raise $500 million in capital for the development of a floating hotel-casino in Macau.

The South China Post newspaper reported recently that among those backing the coin offering is Wan Kuok-koi aka Broken Tooth, a 61-year-old who served 14 years in jail for “an array of gangland crimes.”

Earlier this month, the People’s Bank of China banned the practice of creating and selling new digital currencies, and ordered that the country’s major cryptocurrency exchanges be shut down (see previous InfoPowa report).