Mayor of Seoul, Park Won-soon, has recently announced that the city will soon have its own digital currency and that multiple groups will be built dedicated to exploring blockchain technologies, and all its future implications. In the words of the Mayor of the South Korean capital, “given that Seoul has become a leader in the fourth industrial revolution in areas including information technology, it will have to continue exploring and studying revolutionary technologies like blockchain.”
The Mayor has shown his intentions of creating a legal and institutional framework for Seoul’s own digital currency which will be termed as “S Coin.” He is also going to concentrate efforts to change the country’s current attitude towards cryptocurrency to help facilitate the financial tool.
Won-soon further explained, “Blockchain technology is applicable to public infrastructures like the public transportation system and issuance of youth allowance payments. I truly believe blockchain technology can be used to power most of the government activities in Seoul,” and further cited how the technology can provide economic benefits such as savings on electricity, water, and gas.
According to Hani, a local news source, Seoul’s blockchain initiative is set to be completed by this April. The Seoul Metropolitan Government is also collaborating with Samsung SDS to establish an Information Strategy Plan to help introduce blockchain into government and public institutions.
In conclusion to his statement, the Mayor addressed the attitude of people in South Korea as a whole towards blockchain and cryptocurrencies. He cited the enthusiasm of the of all the people in the country and the outrage that occurred when the Ministry of Justice banned cryptocurrency trading. In the words of Won-soon, “Previously, the South Korean people protested strongly against the Ministry of Justice’s plan to ban cryptocurrency trading, and that led to the government deeply reconsidering its stance towards cryptocurrencies. The role of provincial and regional governments, I believe, is to apply innovative technologies first and demonstrate progress to the federal government. If Seoul lessens restrictions on cryptocurrency and blockchain development, it will lead to a flexible environment for businesses.”