With the continuous growth of the global cryptocurrency market, more countries are looking to adopt digital assets. Some nations have already begun the process of integrating digital assets into their economy while others are working on better ways to accommodate the growing numbers of crypto users in their jurisdictions.
To discover how far and wide the reach of crypto has become, Casino Days India has compiled a list of countries that use crypto the most.
Arguably the most progressive country when it comes to adopting crypto, Japan has invested in digital currency right from the start. It is presently one of the biggest countries that use cryptocurrency, jumping to 103 trillion yen in 2021, which amounts to $900 billion. This data comes from the Japan Virtual Currency Exchange Association (JVCEA), a group of 31 exchanges that function as a self-regulating entity in the Japanese crypto industry.
Several digital currencies, including Bitcoin, are recognized as legal properties in Japan, as stated in the Payment Services Act (PSA) which is the regulatory framework in Japan regarding payments.
However, due to the large high-profile hacking cases, rules were put forward to regulate crypto exchanges and trading. This includes the requirement of registering with the Financial Services Agency (FSA), a government agency that stands as the country’s financial regulator, to operate.
As of May 2021, Nigeria had approximate $2.4 billion worth of crypto. With the Nigerian naira losing value and the difficulty of obtaining US Dollars, crypto has given people an alternative in light of the inflation of their legal tenders. However, crypto became illegal in Nigeria after the February 2021 ban placed by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). The ban was largely due to the anonymous nature of crypto, along with the lack of regulation and its vulnerability to financial crimes.
Currently, market regulators have released a set of regulations as a middle ground when it comes to cryptocurrencies. The article published, entitled ‘New Rules on Issuance, Offering Platforms and Custody of Digital Assets’, was posted on the website of the country’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which includes registration requirements for crypto issuers to file and register their digital assets to the commission.
It is estimated that 12% of America’s population, which amounts to 40 million people, has used crypto largely for investment purposes and not as currency.
This is according to a survey from the Country’s Federal Reserve, which stands as the central banking authority in the USA. Although crypto regulation varies by state, the US continues to develop federal crypto legislation to combat criminal activities within the industry at both domestic and global levels.
There are approximately 20 million investors in India, according to an article from CNN Business. The growth is largely credited to younger investors under the age of 35.
Although crypto is not legal in India, it is stated in a Union Budget report made by the country’s Finance Minister in early 2022. According to the clause, the government intends to place a 1% Tax Deducted on Source (TDS) and 30% tax on any income made from crypto transactions. There is also an intention to introduce a digital rupee, or a Central Bank Digital Currency, within the financial year.
El Salvador made the historic move to adopt crypto as the country’s legal tender back in September 2021. The country’s president, Nayib Bukele, who has promoted the adoption of crypto, cited the faster and cheaper way to receive remittances from abroad. It is also a way to decrease the dependency on the US Dollar which has been the country’s legal tender since 2001.
At present, El Salvator currently holds 2,300 BTC which is valued at around $53 million. With the recent crash of crypto, the value of the investment is only half of the public funds they used to buy Bitcoin.
Having said that, it hasn’t been a year since the initiative was passed. There is still plenty of time to determine the outcome of the investment and how it will change the financial landscape of the country.
About 3.3% of France’s population has invested in crypto. Luckily for that percentage of crypto users, Bitcoin and other cryptos are considered digital assets in France.
Businesses can also use crypto thanks to France having a crypto exchange license. In a historic move made in 2022, Binance became a fully regulated digital asset service provider in France. Giving Binance regulatory approval marks France as the first major European country to do so.
Additionally, anyone who wishes to start a blockchain project in the country must do so by applying for VISA from AMF or the Autorité des Marchés Financiers. During the process, they must submit documentation regarding the project and a system to monitor and guard their assets. They will be required to comply with several regulations including Anti Money Laundering.
How is cryptocurrency changing the world?
Considering the crypto market is present on a global scale, it is beneficial to identify its impact. With crypto being used for different purposes, it’s clear that several industries will benefit from its adoption. Here are some of the impacts crypto has in several industries:
Crypto adoption in the retail sector
The popularity of crypto is in large part due to younger investors. Because of this, most retailers that cater to the age group are adopting crypto as a payment method to meet the needs of their target market. Some of the biggest companies that now accept crypto payments include Shopify, Dell and Starbucks.
Improving cross-border transactions through blockchain
With the help of blockchain, transactions between both institutions and individuals are improved. It allows for more secure transactions without the need for bank intermediaries while having close to no risk of getting tampered with. Additionally, this also lessens high charges due to red tape.
Global alternative to traditional banking
Traditional banking has been largely inaccessible to a lot of people. Unfortunately, most banking systems were not designed to cater to low to middle-class households. In comparison, crypto can be accessed from anywhere in the world through the use of smartphones, making it more convenient for many.
Ready to invest in crypto?
There are developing countries that have been adopting crypto as legal tenders, in large part to avoid big losses from their unstable legal tenders and inflation. For example, countries like El Salvador and the Central African Republic have made the historic move to adopt crypto as a legal tender.
Major countries have yet to do the same. However, with a continuously growing number of crypto users all over the world, many have begun developing regulations for crypto trading, exchange, and ownership.
While keeping all this in mind and understanding the risks involved, it is also important to recognize that the crypto market is set to keep growing in the years to come.