Taiwan and Cryptocurrency

Taiwan Cryptocurrency Laws
Regulation of Digital Currencies: Cryptocurrency, Bitcoins, Blockchain Technology

Currently, there are no regulations or rulings concerning the purchase, sale, or taxation of cryptocurrencies in Taiwan. However, cryptocurrencies that are unconnected to any nation are not accepted by the Central Bank of the Republic of China (Taiwan) (CBC) as currencies.[1]

In fact, the CBC and the Financial Supervisory Commission of Taiwan (FSC) issued a joint press release on December 30, 2013, stating that virtual currencies, such as Bitcoin (BTC), are not “currencies,” but rather “highly speculative digital virtual commodit[ies]” in Taiwan.[2] No more than a week later, the FSC issued a separate press release enjoining local banks from accepting or exchanging bitcoin, or providing any other bitcoin-related services at ATMs.[3] On December 19, 2017 and June 22, 2018, the FSC released two additional press releases reminding the general public of each of these positions.[4]

On November 7, 2018, Taiwan revised its Money Laundering Control Act (MLCA) to allow the government to regulate virtual currency platforms and trading businesses as “financial institutions” under Article 5. By doing so, the government was able to require virtual currency platforms and trading businesses to implement internal-control and audit systems designed to combat money laundering and terrorist financing, or otherwise be fined. Such “financial institutions” are also now required to produce risk assessment reports on a periodic basis.[5] However, there are no rules or regulations requiring them to be registered or licensed.[6]

In addition, the FSC has emphasized that initial coin offerings (ICOs) and other virtual currency with the characteristics of securities are subject to relevant provisions in the Securities and Exchange Act. More specifically, virtual coins to be issued in ICOs may be considered “securities” in securities token offerings (STO), depending on the circumstances of the case. For this analysis, relevant considerations include whether “there is an investment of money; in a common enterprise; with an expectation of profits from the investment; and the profits come mainly from the efforts of the issuer or a third party.”[7]

In April 2021, the Executive Yun tasked the FSC with enacting additional rules and regulations related to anti-money laundering issues, such as proper know-your-customer requirements and other reporting requirements for transactions exceeding NT $500,000. In fact, the FSC issued a press release on April 20, 2021, giving cryptocurrency exchanges and trading platforms until July 1, 2021, to fully comply with the MLCA and other existing anti-money laundering regulations. Most major exchanges in Taiwan, however, are said to already have the robust anti-money laundering procedures currently in contemplation by the FSC and suggested by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), an intergovernmental money laundering and terrorist financing watchdog.[8]

P.S. Insights on Cryptocurrency Legal Issues

Most jurisdictions and authorities have yet to enact laws governing cryptocurrencies, meaning that, for most countries, the legality of crypto mining remains unclear.

Under the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), crypto miners are considered money transmitters, so they may be subject to the laws that govern that activity. In Israel, for instance, crypto mining is treated as a business and is subject to corporate income tax. In India and elsewhere, regulatory uncertainty persists, although Canada and the United States are relatively friendly to crypto mining.

However, apart from jurisdictions that have specifically banned cryptocurrency-related activities, very few countries prohibit crypto mining.

Our Freeman Law Cryptocurrency Law Resource page provides a summary of the legal status of cryptocurrency for each country across the globe with statutory or regulatory provisions governing cryptocurrency.  The globe below provides links to country-by-country summaries:

Podcast:

The Freeman Law Project – Cryptocurrency Regulation and Taxation: A Brief Primer

Is cryptocurrency legal in Taiwan?

Do you have questions about cryptocurrency, digital currencies, or blockchain technology?
Freeman Law can help with digital currencies, tax planning, and tax compliance. Contact us now
to schedule a consultation or call (214) 984-3410 to discuss your cryptocurrency and blockchain technology concerns.

 


[1] https://www.globallegalinsights.com/practice-areas/blockchain-laws-and-regulations/taiwan

[2] https://www.cbc.gov.tw/tw/cp-302-43531-78F12-1.html

[3] https://www.fsc.gov.tw/ch/home.jsp?id=96&parentpath=0,2&mcustomize=news_view.jsp&dataserno=201401060003&toolsflag=Y&dtable=News; https://www.loc.gov/law/help/cryptoassets/taiwan.php

[4] https://www.fsc.gov.tw/en/home.jsp?id=54&parentpath=0&mcustomize=multimessage_view.jsp&dataserno=202011120009&aplistdn=ou=news,ou=multisite,ou=english,ou=ap_root,o=fsc,c=tw&dtable=News; https://www.fsc.gov.tw/ch/home.jsp?id=96&parentpath=0,2&mcustomize=news_view.jsp&dataserno=201712190002&aplistdn=ou=news,ou=multisite,ou=chinese,ou=ap_root,o=fsc,c=tw&dtable=News

[5] https://law.moj.gov.tw/ENG/LawClass/LawAll.aspx?pcode=G0380131; https://www.loc.gov/law/help/cryptoassets/taiwan.php

[6] https://www.mondaq.com/technology/1028444/virtual-currencies-comparative-guide

[7] https://www.fsc.gov.tw/ch/home.jsp?id=96&parentpath=0,2&mcustomize=news_view.jsp&dataserno=201712190002&aplistdn=ou=news,ou=multisite,ou=chinese,ou=ap_root,o=fsc,c=tw&dtable=News; https://www.mondaq.com/technology/1028444/virtual-currencies-comparative-guide

[8] https://forkast.news/crypto-exchange-aml-regulation-taiwan/; https://btcmanager.com/taiwanese-crypto-exchanges-july-1-aml-compliance/

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