Indonesia launches its crypto exchange and clearing house

The national cryptocurrency exchange announced by the Indonesian government a week ago has begun to function, according to a statement from the country’s Commodity Futures Trading Supervisory Agency, known as Bappebti. The platform will be the only space in the country where the legal exchange of digital assets is allowed. 

Bappebti confirmed the opening of the exchange on July 20. In addition, the agency has established a futures clearing house along with the exchange. A clearing house mediates between a buyer and seller, ensuring the transaction goes smoothly.

Previously it was reported that Bappebti would restrict cryptocurrency sales to local transactions while keeping them in line with international market developments. Licensed traders will have one month to join the exchange.

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The project has been in the works since at least December 2021. In September 2022, Pang Hue Kai, CEO of Tokokrypto — one of 25 licensed crypto exchanges in Indonesia, partly owned by Binance — called the project “a catalyst for the Indonesian crypto ecosystem.”

The launch, planned for the end of 2022, was delayed to June 2023 due to the process of reviewing potential participants of the exchange. At the time, the country’s Trade Minister Zulkifli Hasan announced that all active crypto exchanges with a national registration could join the exchange.

In 2022, the deputy minister of Indonesia’s Ministry of Trade, Jerry Sambuaga, suggested several policy changes in response to the “interesting year for the development of physical trading of crypto assets”. Among them was a requirement for two-thirds of directors and commissioners at crypto firms to be Indonesian citizens.

The country remains an attractive market for the crypto industry, according to Bappebti data. In 2021, roughly 4% of the country’s population or just under 11 million people, had invested in crypto.

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