Bitcoin has grown exponentially since the turn of 2017, gaining more investors, admirers, and skeptics on its journey to the moon. Still, as the anticipation surrounding the innovation grows, different countries are developing different approaches.
While bitcoin is a fully fledged legal tender and store of value in Japan, it has yet to be legalized and obtain the same status in a country like India, for instance.
While India has not followed the steps of China, a one-time ‘ bitcoin capital’ of the world, the Southeast Asian country’s authorities have not ceased to express their reservations over the world’s pioneer cryptocurrency.
On November 6, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) stated that cryptocurrencies expose people to financial, legal, and security-related risks. Further, the executive director of the RBI announced in November that bitcoin is not in the financial plans of the RBI.
As excerpted on inc42.com, the official said, “Our current position on bitcoin is that we will not be using it for any payments and settlements, though the technology (Blockchain) underlying cryptocurrencies will not end.”
It does seem, however, that Indian authorities want to review their stand on the digital currency, as the Indian government has put a committee in place to deliberate on the way forward for cryptocurrencies in India.
On Bitcoin Policy
If the price of bitcoin were still at the $700 to $1,000 price region, as it stood in the latter part of 2016 and early 2017, there would not have been this much interest in the cryptocurrency from governments, institutional investors, and even skeptics. Naturally, the leaps and bounds the store of value has earned in the past few weeks have gained a different kind of attention.
In line with the ubiquity and continuous rally of the digital currency, the state of India is planning to formulate a specific policy with which to deal with advancements in the sector.
As reported by Economic Times, the RBI is yet to have a change of heart towards giving bitcoin the status of legal tender. In a statement, the RBI said, “It has not given any license or authorization to any entity or company to operate such schemes or deal with Bitcoin or any VC.”
It remains to be seen what the outcome of the impending policy will bring to the Indian ecosystem. However, the regulation implies an interest in using the digital currency in the region. The problem facing the Indian government is that bitcoin has proven to be sometimes unwieldy for any single party, as seen in the case of the ban by China in September 2017.