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South Korea postpones crypto tax implementation to 2023

Some lawmakers argued that there are no measures in place that will help identify taxable income from crypto trading done via overseas exchanges.

Seoul, South Korea / Image by: Wikimedia Commons

Tue, 07 Dec 2021, 06:02 am UTC

South Korean crypto investors can still enjoy another year without being taxed on their crypto gains. Legislators recently voted to delay the crypto tax implementation, which was originally set to take into effect next year and moved it to 2023.

South Korean legislators have pushed back the implementation of taxes on cryptocurrency profits by a year. During its plenary session on December 2, lawmakers voted to move the crypto tax implementation to 2023, Coindesk reported.

The proposed tax will levy a 20 percent tax on crypto gains over 2.5 million won (US$2,122) made in a one-year period, according to Bloomberg. The crypto tax was supposed to take into effect starting January 1, 2022, which is a year ahead of a similar capital-gains tax on stocks leading some to question why digital currencies such as Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH) appear to be treated differently.

There are speculations that the vote to postpone the crypto tax might have something to do with the presidential election in March. Analysts say that lawmakers are trying to appeal to voters in their 20s and 30s, who are more likely to own crypto and oppose the proposed tax.

Rep. Yoo Gyeong-joon of the main opposition People Power Party pushed for the delay and argued that there are no measures in place that will help identify taxable income from crypto trading done via overseas exchanges. “No cross-border cooperation measures are in place on taxation on crypto trading gains. It simply is unfair taxation for users of local exchanges as opposed to those who trade overseas,” the former Statistics Korea previously said, according to the Korea Times.

Meanwhile, Korea Blockchain Association (KBA) director Harold Kim opined that crypto investors were being treated unfairly compared to stock investors. He pointed out that while stock investors would only pay capital gains tax upon reaching 50 million won (US$42,450), crypto investors will start paying taxes when their gains reach $2,122. He added that investors could carry over stock losses for five years but the same option is not available for crypto losses.

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