Over 50 countries have banned cryptocurrencies, according to a report from the Global Legal Research Directorate of the Law Library of Congress. The November report served as an update to research published in 2018, found the number of countries banning crypto “increased significantly” since the research first came out in 2018.
Since 2018, “the number of countries found to have issued cryptocurrency bans has increased significantly,” the report said. As of November 2021, nine countries have placed an “absolute ban” on crypto, meaning it’s completely illegal. Algeria, Bangladesh, Egypt, Iraq, Morocco, Nepal, Qatar, and Tunisia joined China in outlawing crypto.
China first decided to ban crypto trading in 2017. The country extended its ban to block crypto mining earlier this year.
42 more countries have issued “implicit bans” prohibiting banks, lenders, and other financial institutions from dealing with crypto. These countries include Georgia, Turkey, and Saudi Arabia.
The report also found that the number of countries subjecting crypto to tax laws, as well as anti-money laundering (AML) and counter-financing of terrorism (CFT) laws, has jumped from 33 in 2018 to now 103. Except for Bulgaria, all of the European Union member states currently have these regulations in place.
However, 21 countries don’t apply any form of AML or CFT law to their crypto industries, including Brazil, Jordan, Pakistan, and Kazakhstan.
Tim Frost, CEO of fintech platform Yield App, told Insider previously that there’s “no shortage” of other countries embracing crypto, offsetting moves by countries like China that have been hostile toward digital assets.
The crypto market has ballooned to more than $2.5 trillion this year, according to CoinGecko data, and briefly eclipsed $3 trillion this quarter. With explosive growth, more countries are bringing crypto into the tax regime, as well as enacting laws meant to AML and CFT, the report found.
The report marked the United States, which is still grappling with how best to regulate the market, with tax and AML and CFT laws.