India rejects cryptocurrency, but it isn't giving up on blockchain

Its government no longer considers bitcoin legal tender.

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David Lumb
February 1, 2018 1:11 PM
Getty Images/iStockphoto
Getty Images/iStockphoto

India officially will not treat cryptocurrencies as legal tender and will try to stop their use in payments, according to a Bloomberg report. This isn't unexpected, given how the country sent tens of thousands of tax notices out after realizing virtual currencies are making $315 million worth of trade per month. While India has finally come out against cryptocurrencies, after repeated warnings that they were "Ponzi schemes," the government will continue exploring the blockchain's potential for the future digital economy.

This comes a day after South Korea ultimately decided to regulate, not ban cryptocurrencies, despite its government sharing India's concern about tax evasion and the subsequent disruption of global trade. Beyond skirting state revenue collection, both countries have logical worries about the safety of cryptocurrency, given how a hacker stole over $500 million from the Tokyo-based exchange Coincheck last week.

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