South Korea considers further delay in crypto taxation ahead of general election

South Korea’s ruling People Power Party is proposing another delay in the implementation of cryptocurrency investment gains taxation, now potentially extending the start date to 2027.

The move is part of the party’s campaign strategy for the forthcoming general election in April. The party has emphasized the need for a basic regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies as a priority over taxation. This includes plans to introduce new regulations for the crypto industry, focusing on crypto custody providers and token listing requirements.

These proposed regulations aim to complement South Korea’s initial crypto regulations, which are due to take effect in July.

The decision to delay the crypto gains tax, originally set to start in January 2023 and later rescheduled for January 2025, reflects the party’s commitment to carefully structure the regulatory landscape before imposing taxes. The party is expected to finalize its core election promises by the end of the month.

Amidst these developments, the Ministry of Economy and Finance’s representative hinted last month at a possible discussion within the country’s legislative body about abolishing income tax on crypto assets. This discussion aligns with the administration’s broader initiative to eliminate taxes on financial investments, including stocks and funds. However, according to Herald Business Daily, the People Power Party is not contemplating a complete abolition of crypto taxation.

Furthermore, the party proposes to align the crypto tax threshold with that of stocks, advocating for a more equitable tax framework. Under the current plan, a 22% tax is levied on crypto gains exceeding 2.5 million Korean won ($1,875), whereas stock gains are only taxed beyond 50 million won.

In December last year, South Korea announced a policy requiring high-ranking public officials to disclose their cryptocurrency holdings starting the following year. The policy aims to mitigate potential conflicts of interest and uphold ethical standards among government officials.

In addition to these domestic initiatives, South Korea’s financial oversight head, Lee Bok-hyun, plans to engage in discussions with U.S. SEC Chairman Gary Gensler about the crypto industry, with a particular focus on spot Bitcoin ETFs.

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