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05/02/2018: Biggest Stories in the Cryptosphere

1. South Korea’s Finance Minister Discusses Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies

Kim Dong-yeon, South Korea’s Finance Minister, thinks blockchain is a revolutionary power that will change the world. He shared his thoughts on the technology during a ministerial trip to China. He also stated that the two countries should research and develop the technology together, as it will be the key for the 4th industrial revolution. He continued discussing the connection between blockchain and cryptocurrencies. The Finance Minister said that the latter incentivises people to take part in the blockchain network. Dong-yeon has always been positive about the crypto market, notably arguing against a proposed ban on cryptocurrency exchanges in South Korea.

2. New York Lawmaker Wants to Look Into State-backed Cryptocurrency

New York Lawmaker Clyde Vanel issued a bill proposing to assess the impact a state-backed cryptocurrency would have on the state of New York. The bill is dated February 2nd, but Vanel has previously issued bills related to blockchain. If the bill is successful, a specific task force will be created to carry out the task. Regulatory implications would be the first ones to be investigated, especially the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. The monetary policy and the taxation system would also require an assessment.

3. Singapore Airline to Use Blockchain for Customer Loyalty Schemes

Singapore Airline has announced on its website it will launch a blockchain-based loyalty scheme. It will be the first blockchain-based airline loyalty digital wallet in the world and it will be launched by the SIA Group’s KrisFlyer frequent-flyer programme in approximately six months. This would give frequent flyers the option to spend their accumulated miles at retail partners, effectively allowing them to use them for everyday spending. Retail partners are currently being signed up only in Singapore. The program comes following a proof-of-concept trial carried out jointly with KPMG and Microsoft.

4. Richest Royal Family in Europe Interested in Cryptocurrency Investment

Crown Prince Alois of Liechtenstein, part of the richest royal family in Europe, has declared his interest in cryptocurrency investment to protect its wealth. Although the state of Liechtenstein does not have the ability yet, Crown Prince Alois said that in the future it could be a good idea for the state to investigate the phenomenon. It would be part of a diversified approach, as the royal family is also considering investing in other assets. Furthermore, it was also added that blockchain technology could improve the management of the principality.

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