Cryptocurrency Trading Volume in India Surges Amid Lockdown, Regulatory Uncertainty Remains

India saw a rapid increase in cryptocurrency trading amid the lockdown period, and after the Supreme Court overturned the Reserve Bank of India’s decision to ban crypto businesses, the Hindu reports.

India’s Crypto Trading Volume May Be Up to $30M Per Day

The strict social distancing rules, which were adopted at the end of March, might have triggered a surge in cryptocurrency trading volumes, bringing many new participants. Local companies that deal with cryptocurrencies in one form or another said that they had noticed a lot more retail investors showing interest in Bitcoin and altcoins.

Ajeet Khurana, former crypto executive at the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) and former CEO of Zebpay, said:

“Along with the lifting of the restrictions on trading, the lockdown has also pushed people to stay at home and many people are spending more time on their desktops and many of them are trading more. Trading volumes are quite robust. Daily crypto trading volume in India may be $10-$30 million.”

He added that thanks to the recent increase in trading volumes, cryptocurrencies should become a valid asset class in India.

“The regulators can no longer look away and fundamental issues like classification, taxation, need to be addressed,” Khurana stated.

Nischal Shetty, founder, and CEO of crypto exchange WazirX, said that they had seen up to a fourfold increase in sign-ups. Trading volumes surged 400% on the platform in the last three or four months.

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While Shetty admitted that the Supreme Court’s decision to lift the ban has been decisive, the lockdown has played a key role as well. Indians now have more free time to explore the market and learn new concepts. Besides this, many people are turning heads towards trading amid an increase in unemployment.

Lack of Regulatory Clarity Is Still Hindering Adoption

Despite the increasing popularity of cryptocurrencies, reports on a possible law to ban crypto trading and the lack of clear rules are impeding an even more rapid adoption.

While the Supreme Court greenlighted local banks to serve cryptocurrency businesses, the government hasn’t been able to decide how to supervise this market even though several committees have presented their proposals, including two draft Bills.

Ripple executive Navin Gupta commented:

“Everything happening today is in a policy vacuum where people are doing business but don’t know what the future holds for them.”

Sagar Sarbhai, who manages Ripple’s Regulatory Relations for APAC and the Middle East, said that the lack of clarity is preventing Ripple from launching enterprise use cases for digital assets.

“Before the ban, India was among the top three or top four countries globally but now it is nowhere near that. With more clarity, a lot of players and exchanges will come and launch in India,” he added.

Shetty revealed that IAMAI was currently working on a code of conduct for digital currencies.

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