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South Korea investigates $1.5 billion in bitcoin prizes

South Korea investigates $1.5 billion in bitcoin prizes

South Korean law enforcers started a probe into possible violations of foreign currency exchange rules using the so-called "kimchi premium" for Bitcoin.

According to Yonhap, the process is part of a broader investigation run by the country's Financial Supervisory Service (FSS). The investigation concerns companies involved in overseas remittances. The list allegedly includes the country's major banks, Woori Bank and Shinhan Bank.

The FSS said the companies were benefiting from a "kimchi premium," meaning that bitcoin in South Korea is traded at a higher price from the market. Foreign traders cannot take benefit of the discrepancy because foreign nationals are not allowed to open accounts on local cryptocurrency exchanges. The proceeds went abroad. According to the newspaper, China accounted for a significant portion of the remittances. In total, we are talking about more than $1.5 billion.

According to some reports, the regulator has already sent materials to the Supreme Prosecutor's Office.

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