Mining and trading in cryptocurrencies are illegal in Nepal, the country’s central bank has reminded citizens of the Himalayan nation. The regulator also warned that participation in such activities would be subject to sanctions under applicable law. However, despite their position, the Nepalese have continued to invest in Bitcoin, media reports show.
Participation in illegal crypto activities is a criminal offense, the Nepal Rastra Bank said in a statement
Cryptocurrency trading and mining are criminal offenses because they are illegal in the country, noted the Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) in a recent warning titled “Cryptocurrency transactions are illegal”.
In the notice, which appeared on the central bank’s website on Thursday, the financial regulator referred to Nepal’s foreign exchange law passed in 2019. Quoting the online news agency Khabarhub, the NRA stated:
Trading and mining cryptocurrencies as well as promoting illegal activities are punishable under applicable laws.
“Those who cheat people through these illegal activities will also be prosecuted,” the monetary authority further emphasized. The warning is aimed at Nepalese people who mislead others into minting coins or exchanging cryptocurrencies.
Answering the question “Is it possible to trade cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin in Nepal?” In the FAQ section of its website, the Central Bank Institute says: “Cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin cannot be traded in Nepal. Doing such business is illegal. “
Nepalese media urge the government to change its crypto policy
Since cryptocurrencies are also banned in Nepal under the NRA law, there have been reports in the past that the Kathmandu government cracked down on related activities and even arrested people involved in mining and trading. Nonetheless, Bitcoin continued to attract the attention of the country’s population, and local media articles have responded to that interest.
Despite warnings from NRB, the Nepalese have continued to invest in cryptocurrencies, according to local media. Some successful examples of people investing money in Bitcoin have had an impact on the Nepalese, as Nepali Trends noted in an article on cryptocurrencies last July:
Cryptocurrency may be the future currency of the world … So there is a great suspicion that some people are still trading Bitcoin.
“It seems that Nepalis invest in different ways. Some reports show that people are seeking help from relatives and friends living abroad to invest in cryptocurrencies, ”the publication said. Such investments go largely unnoticed as Nepal is lagging behind in technological advances and the central bank is unable to track and regulate Bitcoin transactions, the online edition pondered.
The author, Tirsana Khadka, believes that immediate legalization of cryptocurrencies may be impossible, but believes that Kathmandu authorities cannot underestimate the increasing use of digital cryptocurrencies in businesses worldwide. “With no third party involved, the transaction is safe, fast and cheap,” says Khadka, insisting that “Nepal should soon change the perception of bitcoin and cryptocurrency legislation on a political level.”
Do you think the Nepalese regulators will change their attitudes towards crypto activities in the future? Do share your expectations in the comments section below.
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