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How the World Views Cryptocurrencies and What Happens Next?

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    There’s a clear divide around the world when it comes to viewpoints on the legitimacy of cryptocurrencies and the likelihood of whether they are here to stay. Some nations have become out-and-out advocates of these virtual currencies, while others have sought to actively ban them from use claiming them to be illegitimate and a danger to retail investors. Let’s take a look at the conflicting standpoints from governments in all four corners of the world, and also find out what happens next for cryptos.

    The steadfast advocates of cryptocurrency

    Undoubtedly, the biggest advocate of the cryptocurrency sector is the Japanese government who recently approved a law recognising bitcoin as legal tender throughout Japan. Consumption tax was also scrapped from 1st April 2017 after it was declared as legal tender - legal way to pay for goods and services, in other words. The Japanese government also agreed to remove bitcoin from double taxation policies. This was something that the Australian government copied, following up by legalising bitcoin and allowing it to be used like any other currency.
    In Ukraine, the lack of regulation has seen one of the nation’s leading banks give its customers the option of buying bitcoins from any of its ATMs. Five years ago, the Canada Revenue Agency agreed bitcoin payments could be viewed as "barter transactions". Plans are also afoot within the Canadian federal government to properly regulate bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies via its financial legislation.

    The ones sitting on the fence

    Surprisingly, one of the biggest nations on our planet remains largely unmoved by the vast variety of existing cryptos. In India, there is no clear law about the legality of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, even though bitcoin in particular is increasingly used to pay for goods and services. Further east, Malaysia has opted not to acknowledge bitcoin as legal tender yet, while New Zealand’s Reserve Bank views cryptocurrencies as a "vulnerability" and more like a payment system than a currency.
    Belgium could not be any more on the fence if they tried. The government published a warning to all Belgians explaining that there is no government oversight on bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Belgium, along with many of the European Union (EU) member states, is waiting on EU guidance before choosing which side to take.

    Outlawed: Those with a dim view of cryptocurrency

    At the other end of the spectrum, there are a string of governments that have banned the use of cryptocurrencies entirely. The government with the most prominent negative reaction to cryptocurrency is China. The Chinese authorities have outlawed cryptocurrency token sales and recently shut down a host of China-based cryptocurrency online trading exchanges. The Icelandic government banned bitcoin after fears about the prospect of it triggering capital flight – a large-scale exodus of financial assets and capital out of Iceland.
    In South America, the Bolivian government prohibited the use of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies due to concerns about these currencies encouraging tax evasion and instability for the national economy.

    10 possible outcomes for cryptocurrencies

    The longterm future of cryptocurrencies and their widespread use around the world remains very much up in the air, but here are ten possible outcomes in the years to come:
    1. The EU will try to prevent the use of cryptocurrencies for terrorist financing and money laundering. This would be music to the ears of cryptocurrency exchanges that would encourage retail investors and traders to take bitcoin, Ethereum and other digital currencies more seriously, because it would indirectly mean the EU has acknowledged bitcoin's influence.

    2. On the flip side, the EU member states may struggle to ever reach common ground about the regulation of cryptocurrencies. That would mean a lack of unified strategy to oversee adoption. Individual countries would then be required to devise their own legislation, which may be viewed as too big a job by some governments, that would eventually choose to outlaw cryptocurrencies entirely.

    3. As the world’s most cryptocurrency-loving nation, Japan could go further down the path of adopting digital currencies by allowing businesses to pay their employees’ wages in cryptos.

    4. South Korea could have a change of heart and follow the same path that China has taken by implementing a strict ban on all initial coin offerings (ICOs), outlawing any new cryptocurrencies.

    5. In sport, a Turkish amateur football team has already purchased a player using bitcoin. If reports are to be believed, Wolverhampton Wanderers, who gained promotion to the English Premier League for the 2018-19 season, are considering becoming the first professional club to acquire a player using bitcoin.

    6. Some economic experts have labelled bitcoin a bubble. If their worst fears are confirmed and a crash occurs, this could lead to more governments taking a dim view and outlawing cryptocurrencies to protect investors.

    7. We’re not too far away from bitcoin reaching its hard-wired token limit. Only 4.2 million bitcoin tokens are left to be mined, which will result in a maximum 21 million bitcoin tokens in circulation. The limit is predicted to be reached by 2040, and it will definitely influence price at that point.

    8. If bitcoin does stick around and enhance its reputation with widespread government regulation, we could see more trading exchanges offering bitcoin futures as a new option for retail investors.

    9. Those nations that do eventually lean towards regulating cryptocurrencies will almost certainly look to protect the interests of consumers by implementing AML and KYC procedures.

    10. Once a cryptocurrency fan and now a cryptocurrency hater, China could yet go full circle again and opt to reopen token sales and trading exchanges under stricter regulations, providing other nations can provide proof of cryptocurrency’s longevity.

Comments (1)


1109 days ago
Much agreeable passage, insightful and agile. Well written too!