Mayowa is a crypto enthusiast/writer whose conversational character is quite evident in his style of writing. He strongly believes in the potential of digital assets and takes every opportunity to reiterate this. He's a reader, a researcher, an astute speaker, and also a budding entrepreneur. Away from crypto however, Mayowa's fancied distractions include soccer or discussing world politics.
Most governments are continually looking for ways to find a common ground in crypto regulations, but some have outrightly banned the use of crypto.
For many who understand its concept, Bitcoin (BTC) is a blessing, but for others, maybe not so much. Since its inception in 2009, Bitcoin has always been trailed by controversies. And so have all other cryptocurrencies that followed in its footsteps. From uncertain presidents to pessimistic senators, Bitcoin’s list of critics is an ever-increasing one. But, while some people decry its volatile nature, others are worried about its potential for being used by bad actors, as well as the negative impact of its mining on the environment. Hence, governments have tried to put forward crypto regulations to, at least, mitigate against the use of cryptocurrencies in criminal ways.
However, for some other countries, a limiting regulation is simply not enough. These countries have outrightly banned the use of Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies. Even more, they put heavy penalties in place for anyone caught carrying out crypto transactions.
Top 5 Countries on the List
Below is our list of the top 5 countries with the strictest crypto regulations. They have an irreparable relationship with crypto and are very clear about their stance.
In September 2021, China took the world by surprise when its central bank — the People’s Bank of China PBoC, indicated its determination to rid the country of all forms of crypto mining and trading activities. The PBoC released a statement, saying, “All crypto-related transactions, including services provided by offshore exchanges to domestic residents, are illicit financial activities.” The country also swung into action, almost immediately, and began cracking down on defaulters.
It is currently against the law to carry out crypto transactions in Algeria. The Algerian government passed a law in 2018, which prohibits buying, selling, using, or simply holding cryptocurrencies in possession. In fact, violating the law is a criminal offence and one which is punishable.
Bolivia is one of the earliest countries to completely ban the use of Bitcoin. The Bolivian government banned Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in 2014, stating that they cannot be trusted as an investment.
Vietnam’s crypto regulation may seem a little dicey. This is because the government does not exactly have anything against trading Bitcoin or holding them as assets. Nonetheless, the State Bank of Vietnam claims that it is illegal to use Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies for payments. And failure to comply could bring punishment of fines that may run up to 200 million VND.
Last on our list is the North African country, Egypt. In 2018, an Islamic body known as Dar al-Ifta, issued a religious law against Bitcoin, claiming that its use is “haram.” Although the law did not exactly get a foothold at the time, Egypt’s banking laws in 2020 may be reflective of those laws. By September 2020, Bitcoin trading could no longer be done without a Central Bank license.
Many More on the List…
Meanwhile, it should be noted that there is a long list of countries that have a fraught relationship with cryptocurrencies. As the Library of Congress (LOC) reported in November 2021, about 103 countries have directed their financial regulators to come up with protective crypto regulations. However, those regulations may yet not be as stringent as those mentioned earlier in this piece.
Some other countries with not-so-strict crypto regulations are; Bahrain, Gabon, Georgia, Burundi, Maldives, Cameroon, Central African Republic, and many others.
So, if you’re looking to find out whether or not you can use Bitcoin, that is solely dependent on which country you’re in.