South Korean cryptocurrency exchange operators have reportedly made enormous gains in commission-related sales in 2017, over 85 times that of the previous year.
According to data released on Sunday by a politician from South Korea’s ruling Democratic Party, the accumulated sales from commissions among 30 cryptocurrency exchange operators is said to have reached 700 billion won ($648 million) in 2017, Yonhap reports. That figure is up from an estimated 8 billion won in 2016.
The data was released on Sunday by Rep. Park Kwang-on, a journalist-turned-politician who previously served as the spokesperson for South Korea’s president Moon Jae-in. The government reportedly aided in compiling the data which was based on the sales of commissions and bitcoin trading prices released by various exchange operators.
The report also reveals Upbit as country’s leading cryptocurrency exchange operator occupying over half of South Korea’s cryptocurrency trading market at 52.9%. Bithumb, Korbit, and Coinone respectively make for the three largest cryptocurrency exchanges after Upbit.
While Upbit is said to have amassed 194.3 billion won ($182 million) in commission sales, the estimated sales by Bithumb, in particular, is believed to have reached 317.7 billion won ($297 million). Korbit and Coinone reached 67 billion won ($62 million) and 78.1 billion won ($73 million) respectively.
South Korea has emerged among the world’s largest markets for cryptocurrencies in 2017 despite a ban on ICOs near the end of September. Rumors of following China’s lead in shuttering cryptocurrency exchanges after the turn of the year were put to bed after the South Korean government – after a significant public backlash – confirmed there was no intention to issue a sweeping ban on cryptocurrency trading.
“There is no intention to ban or suppress cryptocurrency (market),” South Korea’s Finance Minister Kim Dong-yeon said in late January.
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