BitCoin is a very new currency, and the first among popular cryptocurrencies in the world. However, because the currency is new, there are several risks that come along with getting involved in it. One of the most significant risks is that the currency is largely under-regulated, or unregulated entirely, depending on where you are. This opens the door to fraud, theft, system gaming, and much, much more. So, engaging in unregulated BitCoin activities can lead to big issues.
Understanding the risks, some countries have started to regulate the currency. In fact, in countries like the United States, Japan, and Canada, regulations surrounding BitCoin have quickly evolved to become incredibly strict. On the other hand, some countries have decided that it’s best to avoid the currency entirely. Today, we’ll talk about the top 5 countries that have officially banned BitCoin!
Country #1: Iceland
Iceland was on note when it came to BitCoin early on. The Central Bank of Iceland has issued several statements with regard to the status of BitCoin in the country. The biggest of these statements was made on March 19th, 2014. In the statement on this day, the Central Bank of Iceland explained the legal status of BitCoin in the country. In their statement, Iceland explained that purchasing BitCoin could violate the Icelandic Foreign Exchange Act. Under this act, Icelandic currency is not allowed to leave the country. As a result, a ban on BitCoin is in effect.
Country #2: Bangladesh
Bangladesh has been incredibly outspoken with their views of BitCoin from the early stages. In several statements, the country has explained that BitCoin is not a form of legal tender. The country has pointed toward the fact that the currency lacks a central payment system, leaving consumers financially endangered when using the currency.
As a result of their views, Bangladesh has invoked multiple legal provisions banning bitcoin from the country. In one of the most damning statements for the currency, the Central Bank of Bangladesh said “Bitcoin is not a legal tender of any country. Any transaction through BitCoin or any other crypto-currency is a punishable offense…”
Country #3: Bolivia
Bolivia hasn’t said much about BitCoin over the years. However, what they have said clearly shows that they are not a fan. In fact, BitCoin is not a legal currency in the country. In a statement regarding the legal status of the currency in Bolivia, El Banco Central de Bolivia (Central Bank of Bolivia), issued a statement saying the following…
“It is illegal to use any currency that is not issued and controlled by a government or an authorized entity.”
Country #4: Ecuador
Of all the countries that have banned BitCoin, Ecuador is easily the most interesting one. The truth is that the country didn’t seem to have banned the currency for fraud issues or anything that has to do with the reasons other countries have. Instead, Ecuador is working on its own electronic monetary system. So, they have banned the currency to protect their own electronic currency from the competition.
Country #5: Thailand
Finally, we have Thailand. While the country claims that Bitcoin has been illegal since the beginning that the use of the currency was “illegal because of lack of existing laws”, they have made it official. On July 29th, 2013, the country’s central bank issued a statement stating that use of the currency was officially illegal in Thailand.
If you’re involved or considering getting involved in BitCoin, be very careful. The highly unregulated currency is starting to see regulation, and many countries are banning it because of risks involved. While it is possible to use the currency, and make money in the process, the risks might just be too high!