If you recently became interested in buying, selling or spending Bitcoin, you should always check its legal terms, given the country you’re from and your interests. If you have already invested into this matter, it’s always useful to update your knowledge on the fast-evolving cryptocurrency market.
Cryptocurrency regulations vary from one country to another. Some territories allow Bitcoin to be used for paying taxes and purchase goods, or simply trade it under the form of commodity, others have not bothered at all with regulating it and at the opposite pole there are the countries that made everything in their power to ban it that merely possessing Bitcoin can send you to prison.
Let’s take a look to its present legal regulations classified based on territory, as of January 2022:
Countries where Bitcoin is legal
According to research, the number of countries where Bitcoin is recognized by the law is no less than 111. For example, powers such as the United States and Canada generally have a crypto-friendly stance on cryptocurrencies while enforcing anti-money laundering laws to prevent fraud. European Union member states, on the other hand, are not allowed to launch their own cryptocurrencies, but cryptocurrency exchanges are legalised and required to comply with regulations.
An extensive list of such countries includes Antigua and Barbuda, Australia, Barbados, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cayman Islands, Chile, Croatia, Dominica, Estonia. Finland, Germany, Indonesia, Italy, Ireland, Japan, Lithuania, Malta, Mauritius, Marshall Islands, New Zealand, Norway, Philippines, Serbia, South Korea, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United Arab Emirates, United States, Uzbekistan and Venezuela.
Countries where Bitcoin is nor legal nor illegal
Some countries have not yet decided what to do with Bitcoin. In such cases, using BTC is legal in the sense that you can own it, but there are no clear rules or legal protections regarding its status. These countries are either still creating a legal framework for Bitcoin and any other cryptocurrency or are still waiting and debating their approach on the matter. These include: Albania. Afghanistan, Angola, Anguilla, Argentina, Belize, British Virgin Islands, Brunei, Cambodia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Guatemala, Haiti, India, Honduras, Kenya, Jamaica, Latvia, Lesotho, Macau, Malaysia, Mexico, Moldova, Montenegro, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Samoa, Zimbabwe.
Beware that there are countries that treat Bitcoin as legally restricted, but not illegal, meaning that it is somewhat restricted and cannot be traded or used for payment. On such territories, banks and other financial services providers are banned from doing business with cryptocurrency exchanges. Such cases include: Bahrain, China, Hong Kong, Iran, Kazakhstan, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Vietnam.
Despite partially banning and restricting it, these laws do not eradicate the trading and use of Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies. Due to the nature of decentralised cryptocurrencies, it is simply impossible to ban them entirely.
As a logical extension of the above, Asia is keen on restricting online gambling as well.
Countries where Bitcoin is illegal
Bitcoin and other mentionable cryptocurrencies are widely welcomed in most parts of the world. Nevertheless, some countries do ban them or prohibit their use. At least nine countries have chosen to do so, either because of the decentralised nature of Bitcoin, the threat to the current financial system, or simply because proper regulation has not yet been approved, namely: Algeria, Bolivia, Bangladesh, Dominican Republic, Ghana, Nepal, The Republic of Macedonia, Quatar, Vanuatu.
If you want to check a more detailed approach on the matter of Bitcoin’s legality access here.
While it definitely had the opportunity to mature, Bitcoin is still new on the battlefield of monetary history. It may take decades before cryptocurrency can completely replace the world’s money supply. As the acceptance and status of the legal tender grows, the idea of Bitcoin as a world currency is coming close to materialising.
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