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Indonesia wants its citizens to lead domestic crypto exchanges

Sept. 21, 2022 Updated Wed., Sept. 21, 2022 at 9:12 a.m.

Employees work at an Indodax office in Jakarta, Indonesia, on Feb. 17.   (Dimas Ardian/Bloomberg)
Employees work at an Indodax office in Jakarta, Indonesia, on Feb. 17.  (Dimas Ardian/Bloomberg)
By Norman Harsono Bloomberg

Indonesia will require its domestic cryptocurrency exchanges to be mostly led by its citizens as it tightens rules to protect consumers.

At least two-thirds of directors and commissioners on crypto bourses must be Indonesians residing in the country, said officials from the trade ministry and commodity futures trading regulatory agency at a parliamentary hearing in Jakarta on Tuesday.

“That way, at least we can stop them from fleeing the country if any problem arises,” said the agency’s acting head Didid Noordiatmoko. He didn’t say when the revised regulation would be issued.

The government is tightening the rule as authorities in Asia struggle to get crypto founders to cooperate with investigations. For example, Do Kwon, co-founder of the Terraform Labs ecosystem that’s at the center of the $60 billion crypto collapse, has left Singapore as South Korean prosecutors seek Interpol’s help to arrest him.

Indonesia’s Deputy Trade Minister Jerry Sambuaga detailed other planned revisions to the rule:

• Minimum capital requirement for crypto exchanges will be gradually doubled to 100 billion rupiah ($6.7 million) in line with their growth

• Exchanges will be banned from reinvesting crypto assets

• Users’ money must be stored in third-party bank accounts

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