Although India’s lawmakers are threatening more crypto crackdowns, this has not stopped Indian investors from pouring $38.8 billion into cryptocurrency over the past year, representing an increase of 19,900%.
According to data from blockchain analytics firm Chanalysis and reported by Cointelegraph and Bloomberg, “crypto investments increased during mid-2020 before going parabolic as the markets surged into new all-time highs towards the end of the fourth quarter.”
Chainalysis also estimates that the total invested in crypto across India grew from $200 million to $40 billion over the past year, and that an estimated 15 million Indians are cryptocurrency holders.
Cointelegraph believes this may be a result of “the Indian Supreme Court’s March 2020 decision to overturn the Reserve Bank of India’s ban on financial institutions providing banking services to firms operating with digital assets.”
However, since the ban overturn, India’s government has made more threats about introducing legislation that will prohibit crypto assets. However, according to Sandeep Goenka, the co-founder of local exchange ZebPay, these threats have not deterred Indians from buying digital assets, and he highlighted the growing appetite for cryptocurrencies amongst the country’s 18–35 year olds, who appear to prefer the assets over owning gold.
He told Bloomberg:
“They find it far easier to invest in crypto than gold because the process is very simple. You go online, you can buy crypto, you don’t have to verify it, unlike gold.”
For example, 32-year-old local entrepreneur, Richi Sood, has invested more than $13,000 in digital assets since December. She cashed out some of her investment when bitcoin broke through $50,000 then reinvested during the recent crash. She says, “I’d rather put my money in crypto than gold. Crypto is more transparent than gold or property and returns are more in a short period of time.”