India has eventually soft-pedalled its ban stand on cryptocurrency, as the Finance Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman threw light on the possibility of regulating the digital currency.
Sitharaman during CNBC-TV18’s IBLA townhall on Friday said: “On the cryptocurrency, yes a lot of negotiations [and] discussions are happening with the Reserve Bank because the supreme court order had very clearly told that the government has to take a call on the matter.
”We are talking with the Reserve Bank,” she confirmed. “Well, I am not sure, much before the cabinet takes a call on it, I want to give you any clues about what is in it.”
“Obviously, the Reserve Bank will be taking a call on how what kind of an official currency, cryptocurrency, will have to be planned and how it has to be regulated, but also we want to make sure that there is a window available for all kind of experiments which will have to take place in the crypto world.
”And therefore, it’s not as if we are going to look inwards and say no we are not, you know, going to have any of this. There will be a very calibrated position taken.
“A lot of mixed messages are coming from across the world. I don’t think there is either a complete go this way or complete go that way in this matter,” she added, elaborating:
”We will have to take a very calibrated position. [The] world is moving fast with technology. We can’t pretend we don’t want it.
“At the same time, we also recognize that in fintech, we led the way. Many countries are looking at us for fintech, kind of, based steps and the kind of things that we have done in payment Duniya.
“So I would think, I can only give you this clue that we are not closing our minds. We are certainly looking at the ways in which experimentations can happen in the digital world and cryptocurrency and so on.”
Bitcoin.com reports that on Saturday, Minister of State for Finance Anurag Thakur also spoke about India’s upcoming cryptocurrency regulation. Stating that the Indian government is open to evaluating and exploring new technologies, including cryptocurrencies, for the sake of improving governance, he was quoted by the media as saying:
Let me say that we welcome innovation and new technology … Blockchain is a new emerging technology. A cryptocurrency is a form of virtual currency. I firmly believe that we must always evaluate, explore, and encourage new ideas with an open mind.