Malaysia’s Ministry of Communications and Multimedia, KKMM, is apparently supportive of cryptocurrency adoption in the country, with the deputy minister pushing government authorities to designate crypto-assets as legal tender. Datuk Zahidi Zainul Abidin, Malaysia’s deputy communications and multimedia minister, has encouraged Malaysia’s regulators to legalise some cryptocurrency and non-fungible token (NFT) use cases. As of now, El Salvador is the only country that has accepted Bitcoin as an official means of payment inside its territory.
“We hope the government can allow this. We are trying to see how we can legalise this so that we can develop youth participation in crypto and assist them,” Deputy Communications and Multimedia Minister Zahidi Zainul Abidin said in parliament today, according to a Bloomberg report.
Zahidi was replying to a question about the government’s stance on NFT marketplaces. He added that crypto regulation is the responsibility of Malaysia’s central bank and the Securities Commission.
The K-KOMM will now follow up on the proposal as the crypto industry exists as a “business and financial program of the future” for the youth.
It is worth noting though that crypto-assets in Malaysia currently fall under the purview of the country’s central bank, Bank Negara Malaysia and the Securities Commission. The statement from the ministry is also in direct opposition to the finance ministry’s stance.
Earlier this month, Malaysian finance minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz objected to the popular view that cryptos should be legalized. According to him, cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ether do not meet the universal characteristics of money and so exist as illegal in the country.
“In general, digital assets are not a good store of value and a medium of exchange. This is because digital assets are vulnerable to volatile price fluctuations due to speculative investments, the risk of theft due to cyber threats and lack of scalability,” he said in a statement to Berita Harian, a Malay-language daily newspaper.
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