Legal expert: Libra may face difficulties when entering Thailand, which does not comply with existing legal definitions

Legal experts say Facebook's Libra may face difficulties when entering Thailand because the cryptocurrency of the integrated blockchain does not fall into any type of financial legislation. Sumaporn Manason, legal officer of the Thai Fiscal Policy Office, said that it does not comply with the Bank of Thailand’s Currency Act because it does not have the legal currency characteristics required by law. These features refer to banknotes or coins that are denominated in Thai Baht, or that can be identified as items or banknotes that are legally repaid or exchanged with other currencies. Libra is not a tangible payment medium, and cryptocurrencies are still not in line with other laws such as the Payments Act. Sumaporn believes that Libra has three possible scenarios: a complete ban by financial authorities; no regulation to promote greater financial inclusion, or indirect attempts to support greater acceptance; and regulation through intermediaries. Thai SEC consultant Bhume Bhumiratana said that only 3-5 Thai companies have the potential to join the Libra Association in the second phase because of the strict conditions, such as newcomers need to have more than 20 million customers or partners. Other big companies also plan to launch their own cryptocurrency and blockchain systems. Before Libra's large-scale adoption, the Bank of Thailand may have to issue its own digital currency, which is difficult for the central bank to manage. Facebook asked for discussions with the Bank of Thailand because there are 50 million registered FB users in Thailand, but the meeting is not over yet.