The Securities and Exchange Commission deferred the release of the rules on digital assets and coin offerings following the collapse of FTX, one of the world’s biggest cryptocurrency exchanges, a top official said Tuesday night.
SEC chairperson Emilio Aquino said in an interview at the sidelines of the SEC’s 86th anniversary and recognition ceremony the corporate regulator would review the proposed rules to make sure that proper safeguard measures are put in place.
The SEC has been reviewing the rules governing cryptocurrency offering and trading since 2017. It delayed the issuance of the rules amid the proliferation of scams and scandals.
It issued the draft rules on digital asset offerings and digital asset exchanges in 2021 to provide the investing public with more investment options and protect them from the misuse of such emerging assets.
“I think we are ready to present it. We have already exposed everything to public comment but then again here comes FTX. FTX was registered in the Bahamas. They have Digital Asset Registration Act that we were supposed to follow suit. But is seems we are again reviewing just to make sure that the same failures do not happen,” Aquino said.
FTX, an exchange founded by Sam Bankman-Fried in 2019 with over a million users, filed for bankruptcy protection in the US.
“We don’t want out kababayans to blame us, especially there were a lot of internal control and regulatory failures. We need to pause and rethink our present policy direction,” he said.
Aquino said despite the negative developments from the cryptocurrency industry, he still believed that digital assets offering should be allowed in the country.
“Most definitely we should allow it to flourish, but only with proper safeguards,” Aquino said.
Aquino said many Filipinos also lost money from the FTX collapse.
“We don’t have that data [on how many Filipinos were affected] but I know it [cost of losses] is in the billions,” Aquino said.