South Korea: Fintech

This country-specific Q&A provides an overview of Fintech laws and regulations applicable in South Korea.

  1. What are the sources of payments law in your jurisdiction?

  2. Can payment services be provided by non-banks, and if so on what conditions?

  3. What are the most popular payment methods and payment instruments in your jurisdiction?

  4. What is the status of open banking in your jurisdiction (i.e. access to banks’ transaction data and push-payment functionality by third party service providers)? Is it mandated by law, if so to which entities, and what is state of implementation in practice?

  5. How does the regulation of data in your jurisdiction impact on the provision of financial services to consumers and businesses?

  6. What are regulators in your jurisdiction doing to encourage innovation in the financial sector? Are there any initiatives such as sandboxes, or special regulatory conditions for fintechs?

  7. Do you foresee any imminent risks to the growth of the fintech market in your jurisdiction?

  8. What tax incentives exist in your jurisdiction to encourage fintech investment?

  9. Which areas of fintech are attracting investment in your jurisdiction, and at what level (Series A, Series B etc)?

  10. If a fintech entrepreneur was looking for a jurisdiction in which to begin operations, why would it choose yours?

  11. Access to talent is often cited as a key issue for fintechs – are there any immigration rules in your jurisdiction which would help or hinder that access, whether in force now or imminently? For instance, are quotas systems/immigration caps in place in your jurisdiction and how are they determined?

  12. If there are gaps in access to talent, are regulators looking to fill these and if so how? How much impact does the fintech industry have on influencing immigration policy in your jurisdiction?

  13. What protections can a fintech use in your jurisdiction to protect its intellectual property?

  14. How are cryptocurrencies treated under the regulatory framework in your jurisdiction?

  15. How are initial coin offerings treated in your jurisdiction? Do you foresee any change in this over the next 12-24 months?

  16. Are you aware of any live blockchain projects (beyond proof of concept) in your jurisdiction and if so in what areas?

  17. To what extent are you aware of artificial intelligence already being used in the financial sector in your jurisdiction, and do you think regulation will impede or encourage its further use?

  18. Insurtech is generally thought to be developing but some way behind other areas of fintech such as payments. Is there much insurtech business in your jurisdiction and if so what form does it generally take?

  19. Are there any areas of fintech that are particularly strong in your jurisdiction?

  20. What is the status of collaboration vs disruption in your jurisdiction as between fintechs and incumbent financial institutions?

  21. To what extent are the banks and other incumbent financial institutions in your jurisdiction carrying out their own fintech development / innovation programmes?