India has always had a mixed relationship with cryptocurrency, and one of the country’s latest exchanges is now shutting its doors thanks to its wonky and lagging regulation.
India Claims Another “Crypto Life”
The exchange is known as Coinome, which recently announced that as of May 15, it will no longer be operating within India’s borders. At press time, it’s unclear if it’s simply leaving the country for “friendlier” territory or if it’s just ending all crypto-related functions permanently.
India’s Reserve Bank announced last year that it was preventing all financial institutions from doing business with cryptocurrency exchanges.
Coinome released a statement explaining:
India is currently going through uncertainty on crypto guidelines and regulations. The government of India has not yet taken a decision on the regulatory framework for crypto exchanges or wallets. Further, the supreme court is yet to act upon the public interest litigation (PIL) on (the) regulation of crypto assets.
The company now joins the ranks of Zeb Pay – once the largest cryptocurrency trading platform in the country – as the latest exchange to be shut down by current regulatory uncertainty in India. Last March, Coin Delta also announced plans to end its operations.
Many cryptocurrency businesses have worked hard to take the Reserve Bank to the highest court in India in the hopes of reversing the decision. The final case occurred last March, and thus far, no resolution has been found.
One platform owner who wished to remain anonymous states that a dark cloud has ultimately fallen over India, and many cryptocurrency operators are thinking of throwing in the towel. He comments:
A lot of people were expecting that the hearing in March would provide some clarity as the government had been asked to bring about regulation in four weeks, but nothing happened. A lot of players are beginning to lose hope.
India has been struggling to develop regulation for cryptocurrencies since 2017. A new report has been issued that suggests the country is now considering a full-on ban of all digital assets, though nothing has been set in stone yet. A hearing will take place on May 23.
There’s a Theme, Here
India is not the only country enduring a harsh relationship with crypto. The other is China, the nation’s neighbor to the north. Last year, the country put a ban on all initial coin offerings (ICOs) and limited all cryptocurrency exchange activity. In addition, the country has recently announced that it’s considering a full ban on all bitcoin and cryptocurrency-related mining, saying that the effects of such mining are harmful to the environment.
At the same time, it’s difficult to take this seriously considering the country has been examining the harmful effects of mining for many years. Officials have consistently said they’ll do something about those effects, but thus far, have failed to take any action.