Bitcoin has surged significantly in 2020 and its adoption has also increased. However, some countries are trying too hard to discourage their citizens from investing in the virtual asset. These countries have either created unfriendly crypto regulations or made their stringent rules even stricter. Accordingly, the most bearish Bitcoin countries are:
Bitcoin can be exchanged for goods and services in the U.S. but the tax policy in the country could discourage some investors from using the asset. Even though the country has clearly outlined that cryptocurrencies are not money, tax is paid in full for transacting with these assets. Also, attempts are made to reduce the tax burden on crypto investors with the U.S. Congress introducing a bill to exempt tax obligations for personal spending of Bitcoin.
What’s more, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has been hot on the tails of crypto exchanges. In 2019, the SEC revealed that cryptocurrencies will be its top priority. Operators of crypto exchanges have either been fined for offering unregistered securities or operating an unlicensed money business. US President Donald Trump also outrightly said he is not a fan of Bitcoin.
The coronavirus epidemic in China is a major factor which has seen bitcoin surge in its price of recent. It has forced many people to resort to digital currencies instead of paper money. However, the Chinese government had banned ICOs and prevented China-based financial institutions from funding crypto-based activities. The East Asian country also blocked internet access to 124 global exchanges including Binance, Huobi, OKEx, and Bitfinex.
In 2019, China made plans to ban Bitcoin mining, classifying the process among wasteful and hazardous activities. Despite these attempts, China is more receptive to blockchain technology. Its central bank is also looking to create a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC). What’s more, the country received CBDC with open arms since it is centralized, unlike Bitcoin.
In August 2019, Brazil’s Department of Federal Revenue (RFB) mandated citizens of the Latin American country to report their crypto transactions. The law is now applicable to individuals, companies, and brokerages that offer the buy or sale of cryptocurrencies. Those who fail to comply receive hefty fines. Nonetheless, the strict law led to some exchanges shutting down with many citing a low trading volume on their platform after the implementation of the law.
The Belgian government has been closely monitoring cryptocurrency exchanges in the country. For starters, Belgium’s Financial Services and Markets Authority (FSMA) blacklisted 21 cryptocurrency trading websites in October 2018. And by October 2019, nine more platforms were blacklisted.
FSMA is now encouraging the government to define regulations for the cryptocurrency space. The latter could make it a bit challenging for potential crypto companies to launch in the country.