India Digital Rupee

India won’t ban digital currencies: finance minister

India will not impose a blanket ban on digital currencies, the country’s finance minister has stated. In a recent interview, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman assured that despite reports of government hostility against the industry, it will take a measured approach.

For months now, the local digital currency sector has been awaiting the next government move after reports of a looming ban. The government further proposed a bill that would ban all “private cryptocurrencies” and pave the way for a digital rupee.

However, according to Sitharaman, a blanket ban is unlikely. Her ministry, and the government at large, have been in consultations with the Reserve Bank on how to proceed, she said. The bank is currently working on how to regulate digital currencies in the Southeast Asian nation.

“But also, we want to make sure that there’s a window available for all kinds of experiments which will have to take place in the crypto world,” she stated in a CNBC-TV18 interview.

Sitharaman observed that India isn’t the only major economy struggling with digital currency regulations. Most countries have been taking a measured approach, with very few taking a firm stand. In addition, the industry is still in its infancy and most regulators are watching its progress before taking a stand.

“There will be a very calibrated position taken on cryptocurrency. We’re certainly not closing off our minds. We’re looking at ways in which experimentation can happen,” she stated.

The Minister’s remarks were warmly welcomed by the Indian digital currency industry. “I think Nirmala Sitharaman just won the entire crypto sector in India with this clarity she’s given,”Nischal Shetty, the founder and CEO of WazirX exchange tweeted.

“It’s amazing news for the Indian crypto industry. Our finance minister has now made it clear that India will not be banning crypto. The next step is to get the government to involve the crypto industry in policy making. This will help formulate the right regulations in India,” he told one outlet.

Gaurav Dahake, the CEO of Bitbns exchange is also just as optimistic. Speaking to Indian outlet Livemint, he stated, “There have been positive developments around crypto. The ministry officials are taking a judicious approach to create an inclusive regulatory framework. The industry is optimistic with the stance taken and would love to initiate dialogue with the government to resolve any issue.”

See also: CoinGeek Live panel, Digital Currency & Global Compliance: Tools & Tips for Exchanges, Wallets & Other Service Providers

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