Park Won-soon, the mayor of Seoul, has declared his intentions to launch South Korean capital’s own cryptocurrency and create a better environment for the development of Blockchain and digital currency projects in the city, the news outlet Hankyoreh reported March 30, referencing an interview with Coindesk Korea.
Park made a public announcement on March 22, stating that he would pursue the creation of Blockchain-oriented industrial clusters and startups and work towards the development of Seoul’s own cryptocurrency ‘S coin.’ To achieve this goal, he will reportedly help prepare the necessary institutional and legal foundations:
"As Seoul is the world's leading city in the field of information and communications, including the 4th industrial revolution, I think it should naturally study new technologies such as blockchains. … In order to make an S coin, we must prepare institutional and legal backing such as ordinances," the mayor said.
Following Estonia’s lead in its Blockchain-based project to help transition the country’s society into a digital environment, Park addressed the potential use of the technology in all administrative functions of Seoul, such as public transportation and electricity, water and gas infrastructure management.
The Hankyoreh reported that Seoul’s Blockchain initiatives are expected to be introduced in April this year.
Finally, Park commented on the Korean government’s strict policies in regards to cryptocurrency, suggesting the possibility of a more free regulatory environment in the future:
"The last time the Ministry of Justice announced regulatory measures, it was a tremendous resistance, and the government seemed to think deeply about it. First, it is the local government's task to create cases and models. If the Seoul government releases certain regulations, it will be able to make the model more freely."
In November 2017, the Seoul Metropolitan Government announced its collaboration with Samsung SDS to develop an information strategy plan for the Seoul city’s Blockchain-based municipal innovation by 2022, targeting welfare, public safety and transportation. The project is also aimed at increasing transparency for government services.