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Instead of a ban, India now wants to tax crypto at 30% and make it legal tender

Indian PM Twitter hackers may have been on to something (image: PM Modi/Twitter)
Indian PM Twitter hackers may have been on to something (image: PM Modi/Twitter)
India has swung from an intention to ban all digital assets transactions in the country to a proposal to tax crypto with a 30% government cut on profits and issuing a digital rupee. According to analysts this arguably means that Indian officials are exploring the possibility of crypto becoming legal tender.

The hackers who tweeted that India has accepted Bitcoin as official currency from Prime Minister Narendra Modi's account may have been on to something, after all. India swung from proposing an outright ban on crypto transactions to now entertaining the thought of taxing digital asset income with a 30% cut and issuing its own digital rupee. The finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman's proposal has now left analysts wonder whether this is a precursor to making cryptocurrencies legal tender in the country.

Introduction of a central bank digital currency will give a big boost to digital economy. Digital currency will also lead to a more efficient and cheaper currency management system

The central bank digital currency (CBDC) has been in test runs since last summer and now the Ministry of Finance informs that the virtual rupee will be launched as soon as the government's next fiscal year. This will, of course, legitimize digital transactions on account the scope of regulation and impact assessments needed to launch a national crypto coin and accept it as legal tender.

As far as crypto taxation goes, the proposed 30% levy seems on the high end and the government has even created a system of transaction reporting incentives such as allowing tax deduction at the source.

No deduction in respect of any expenditure or allowance shall be allowed while computing such income except cost of acquisition. Further, loss from transfer of digital asset cannot be set off against any other income. Gift of virtual digital asset is also proposed to be taxed at the hand of the recipient... The magnitude and frequency of these transactions have made it imperative to provide for a specific tax regime.

The Finance Minister, however, clarified that they are "collecting inputs for regulation... but I can't wait till regulation comes in for taxing people who are making profits." A 30% crypto and NFT tax will most likely force many transactions to be executed on peer-to-peer platforms, think analysts, instead of withdrawing crypto from the government banks. 

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2022 02 > Instead of a ban, India now wants to tax crypto at 30% and make it legal tender
Daniel Zlatev, 2022-02- 2 (Update: 2022-02- 2)