More than 7% Indians owned cryptocurrency in 2021: UN trade body report - Hindustan Times
close_game
close_game

More than 7% Indians owned cryptocurrency in 2021: UN trade body report

Written by Harshit Sabarwal | Edited by Chandrashekar Srinivasan, New Delhi
Aug 12, 2022 12:38 PM IST

The report by the UNCTAD (United Nations Conference on Trade and Development), said the increase in use of cryptocurrencies had increased exponentially globally because of the Covid pandemic.

Over seven per cent of Indians owned digital currency (in the form of cryptocurrencies) in 2021, the United Nations said in a report by UNCTAD (United Nations Conference on Trade and Development) that was published in June. The report said the increase in use of cryptocurrencies had increased exponentially globally because of the Covid pandemic.

In India, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has said that cryptocurrencies are a clear danger.(iStock. Representative image)
In India, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has said that cryptocurrencies are a clear danger.(iStock. Representative image)

In the report, India ranks seventh on the list; as many as 7.3 per cent of Indians owned cryptocurrency in 2021.

Top spot goes to war-torn Ukraine, with 12.7 per cent of people owning cryptocurrencies.

Russia was second at 11.9 per cent and, in s slight surprise, the United States was sixth.

"According to some estimates of digital currency ownership, in 2021, 15 of the top 20 economies in this field were emerging market and developing economies," UNCTAD said.

The report said that there were two reasons for the increased use of cryptocurrencies.

"First, the use of cryptocurrencies was an attractive channel, in terms of price and speed, through which to send remittances. During the pandemic, the already high costs of traditional remittance services rose even higher during lockdown periods due to related disruptions,."

"Second, cryptocurrencies, as part of financial investments and speculation, are mainly held by middle-income individuals in developing countries and, particularly in countries facing currency depreciation and rising inflation (triggered or accentuated by the Covid-19 crisis), cryptocurrencies have been perceived as a way to protect household savings."

The UN report, however, also underlined the pitfalls and risks from investing in cryptocurrencies. "If prices plunge, monetary authorities may need to step in to restore financial stability. Importantly, in developing countries, the use of cryptocurrencies provides a new channel for illicit financial flows."

The report also said cryptocurrencies, if left unchecked, could become a widespread means of payment and even replace domestic currencies unofficially.

In India, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has said that cryptocurrencies are a clear danger and anything that derives value based on make-believe, without any underlying, is just speculation under a sophisticated name.

"We must be mindful of the emerging risks on the horizon. Cryptocurrencies are a clear danger. Anything that derives value based on make-believe, without any underlying, is just speculation under a sophisticated name," RBI governor Shaktikanta Das said on June 30.

Elevate your career with VIT’s MBA programme that has been designed by its acclaimed faculty & stands out as a beacon for working professionals. Explore now!

See more

Catch every big news on Union Budget 2024, Nirmala Sitharaman's announcements, income tax changes and much more on a one stop destination.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
SHARE
Story Saved
Live Score
OPEN APP
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Thursday, July 18, 2024
Start 14 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Follow Us On