Indonesia is planning to launch its own cryptocurrency exchange in 2023, following financial sector reform that will see regulatory powers over digital assets shift to the Financial Services Authority.

The government will set up the exchange before the Financial Services Authority takes over supervision of cryptocurrencies from the Commodity Futures Trading Regulatory Agency (Bappebti).

Currently, cryptocurrencies are traded alongside commodity contracts under the supervision of Bappebti. The launch of the exchange has been delayed several times over the past few years, with the government originally planning to launch the platform in 2021.

The Deputy Trade Minister of Indonesia said in September 2022 that they hoped to launch the crypto stock market by the end of that year.

Indonesia has been supportive of cryptocurrency assets for some time, with the Ministry of Trade formally authorizing crypto asset trading and recognizing cryptocurrency as a commodity in 2018.

Bappebti provided a regulatory framework for crypto assets futures in 2019, allowing for the buying and selling of such assets for investment purposes only.

The number of crypto investors in Indonesia has been steadily increasing, with 11.2 million at the end of 2021 and 16 million in the first 11 months of 2022.

However, trading volume in the country decreased in 2022, falling to around IDR 300 trillion ($19.2 billion) from IDR 859 trillion the previous year.

Bappebti stopped issuing registration certificates for prospective crypto asset traders in August 2022 to ensure “transparent, efficient, and effective trading activities of crypto assets with fair competition to protect the interests of all parties in the crypto trading market.”

There are currently around 25 licensed cryptocurrency exchanges operating in Indonesia, including Zipmex, which suspended withdrawals in the country in 2022 and is now preparing a recovery process.

A report by the CFA Institute has suggested that crypto assets need a clear regulatory framework to achieve mainstream adoption.