Thai central bank says doesn't support digital assets as payments

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BANGKOK, Dec 1 (Reuters) - Thailand's central bank on Wednesday warned companies about accepting digital assets as payment for goods and services, as more companies rolled out partnerships to accept major cryptocurrencies as payment.

"High volatility of digital asset prices, risk of cyber theft and personal data leakages and tools for money laundering could impact customers and businesses," the Bank of Thailand said in a statement.

The announcement comes as Thai firms announce tie-ups with local cryptocurrency exchanges to accept digital assets as payments. Thailand has seen a surge in cryptocurrency trading and interest during the pandemic.

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Property developer SC Assets Pcl (SC.BK) this week announced a partnership with digital assets exchange, Zipmex to allow customers to buy property using digital assets including Bitcoin, Ethereum and Zipmex token.

A similar partnership was announced between retailer, the Mall Group and rival exchange, Bitkub.

Local lenders have also been investing in cryptocurrency exchanges. Last month, Siam Commercial Bank Pcl (SCB.BK) said it would acquire Thai-based exchange, Bitkub for $537 million.

Zipmex is backed by Bank of Ayudhya Pcl (BAY.BK) and counts B Capital Group, the venture capital firm of Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin, as an investor.

The Thai central bank said it was working with the securities and Exchange Commission to come up with regulatory models for digital assets as payments to limit risks.

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Reporting by Kitiphong Thaichareon and Chayut Setboonsarng; Editing by Martin Petty

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