Leading By Example
The Thai Government wants blockchain adoption in the country to happen at a high rate. Part of the strategy they have is to drive their citizens in using blockchain technology. For example, Thailand recently announced that it would use blockchain to track tax payments using blockchain technology to reduce the cases of tax fraud. This may mean that blockchain may eventually be integrated into Thailand’s tax systems in the future.
Blockchain is well known for its transparency. The Thai Revenue Department wants to use this attribute together with machine learning to track down tax payments across the country leaving no loopholes for tax evaders and avoiders.
It is not just the Thai Revenue department that is adopting decentralized methods to streamline their services, other ministries in the Thai government are also adopting decentralized mechanisms for better service provision. Various trials are being conducted in the agricultural sector, copyright, and trade finance. In the finance industry, multiple banks are also integrating blockchain technology into their everyday operations as a result of the conducive blockchain environment in Thailand.
By the government leading the adoption of blockchain technology, the private sector is also likely to follow in full confidence. The public also reads from such moves. Thus they can also participate confidently in blockchain related activities.
Having accepted cryptocurrencies and pushing for their use, Thailand also explored the idea of having a cryptocurrency exchange where various digital assets can be traded. The Association of Security Companies (ASCO) is considering the possibility of opening a mutual cryptocurrency exchange. This is according to reports by the Bangkok Post. With regulations already established, this could sit well with the public as they would have a specific exchange that would arguably be government or regulatory backed thus increasing trust and confidence in this particular exchange. It would also help streamline other exchanges as traders would have a safer option to select compared to other privately-run digital asset exchanges.
Keeping Up With Global Blockchain Trends
Thailand is fast rising, and it could even be argued that it is the Asian blockchain leader regarding its regulations and the support its government gives even to blockchain startups. However, to keep up with the likes of countries such as Canada, Thailand needs to keep on innovating and integrating blockchain technology wherever economically viable and possible.
Central banks around the world in blockchain receptive countries are establishing digital currency initiatives to exploit the advantages that blockchain can afford them. Recently, to keep up with the blockchain progressive world, Thailand released ‘Project Inthanon’ which is their own central bank digital currency initiative. This move is set to ease wholesale funds transfer if it comes into effect. The Bank of Thailand will be working collaboratively with eight other banks in the country to come up with a proof-of-concept prototype.
A promising project is also set to launch soon which will see members of one district in Bangkok trade power amongst themselves and the government. The move is set to lower the electricity bills for participating members by integrating renewable sources of energy into the tradeable power grid. The Bangkok electricity grid will be used to carry this power to various participants. This project is an initiative by Power Ledger, an Australian company that is receiving support in multiple ways from the Thai government.
Thailand has also been at the forefront of supporting blockchain projects that support other industries apart from the fintech industries such as Power Ledger and Pundi X all of which will help solve real-world issues that the greater population is facing.
Thailand is a great example to any country which could want to adopt blockchain technology. It has studied and is still investigating the dynamics of blockchain and cryptocurrency to understand better how they can be used to improve various sectors within Thailand’s economy. The approval of the seven cryptocurrencies as mediums of exchange and elements of investments has helped drive the use of cryptocurrency in the region with more confidence as more shops are now openly accepting Bitcoin and another form of digital asset payment. Their guidelines on tax may not be as clear as investors may want but it is a stepping stone towards better laws and regulations around cryptocurrencies and their supporting industries. Blockchain companies and startups are also finding it conducive to set up shop in Thailand as everything is well regulated such that running blockchain becomes more like running a healthy business.
Thailand is cementing itself as the blockchain capital for Asia. Its progressive regulations are attracting investors, enthusiasts and even curious members of society. This is the approach every country should take when planning on adopting blockchain and cryptocurrency.