The government of Burundi has placed a blanket ban on cryptocurrency trading in the state citing a lack of protection for consumers who burn their fingers trading bitcoin (BTC) and other digital assets. The nation now plans to make defaulters pay huge penalties, reports Bloomberg on September 4, 2019.
Bitcoin Trading Illegal in Burundi
Burundi, a central African country with a population of nearly 12 million people, has banned cryptocurrency trading.
Per sources close to the matter, the columbium and tin ore-rich nation decided to outrightly ban the trading of all blockchain-based virtual currencies due to the volatility associated with these cryptoassets.
Reportedly, some Burundian traders who lost huge amount of funds while trading bitcoin called upon the government to look into the issue and the authorities felt the best solution to the problem was to completely ban cryptos rather than regulate it.
Commenting on the development, Alfred Nyobewumusi, a director at the Central Bank of Burundi’s micro-finance department made it clear that bitcoin and ether are now illegal in the country and the state could implement strict measures to deter people from trading cryptos.
“Strong measures could be taken against all those who fail to respect the country’s decision,” declared Nyobewumusi.
Bitcoin Losing the Regulatory Battle?
While distributed ledger technology (DLT), the revolutionary technology underpinning bitcoin and altcoins is gaining significant traction across the world, a good number of nations remain wary of digital assets due to their super volatile and pseudonymous nature.
Earlier in July 2019, Peter Switzer, a highly reputed Australian lecturer, business and financial commentator stated categorically that cryptocurrencies are just too volatile to be useful, as such these burgeoning cryptoassets should be entirely banned by the government or tightly regulated.
Notably, China has since banned all bitcoin-related financial activities except mining, while India has implemented policies that make it impossible for crypto-linked businesses to survive.
Despite the fact that some jurisdictions still maintain a draconian stance towards cryptocurrencies, other nations like Malta, Switzerland, and Gibraltar who recognize the potential of digital assets have formulated robust, yet amenable guidelines to govern crypto market participants in their regions.
As reported by BTCManager on July 24, 2019, Nigeria’s Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila made it clear that the giant of Africa is ready to work with relevant government parastatals to regulate its cryptocurrency industry in order not to be left behind in innovation.
On September 4, 2019, the Rainforest Foundation US, a non-profit NGO focused on protecting the environment of the indigenous people of the world’s rainforest launched crypto and blockchain-powered campaign aimed at promoting afforestation and curb forest fires.
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