Jurisdictions where cryptocurrencies are not prohibited

Competent state bodies in these countries only plan to start regulating turnover of cryptocurrency. At the moment, legal regulation of cryptocurrency in such countries is limited only by official statements or press releases by the authorities.


Nowadays, transactions with cryptocurrencies are not prohibited or restricted, despite the fact that since 2015 the Central Bank of Armenia has warned citizens against investing in cryptocurrencies. Moreover, the Central Bank of Armenia "is not going to" recognize cryptocurrencies.


According to the explanations of the Central Bank of Brazil, bitcoin is not regulated by current legislation. Moreover, it was also noted that "any regulatory supervision will put pressure on cryptocurrencies, and interference of any authorities from any country can potentially affect prices of cryptocurrencies. The Central bank monitors current situation and will be ready to intervene, if necessary".
On the other hand, Ilan Goldfain, the head of the Central Bank of Brazil, compared cryptocurrencies with financial pyramids and warned citizens against investing in cryptocurrencies during the leap in bitcoin rate in October 2017.
Based on the latest news, it is worth noting certain changes in the position of the regulator regarding legal status of cryptocurrency. On January 15, 2018, the Securities and Exchange Commission of Brazil issued a Directive stating that local investment funds are prohibited from investing in cryptocurrencies. It is also stipulated in the document that cryptocurrencies are not regarded as financial assets by the regulator.

Dominican Republic

In the Dominican Republic, status of cryptocurrency was determined in the official explanation of the Central Bank of June 28, 2017. It states that the only legal means of payment in the country was and will be the national currency, and legalization of cryptocurrency will not be carried out. Citizens can carry out all transactions at their own risk, but they are not prohibited.


Zimbabwe is currently in a deep economic crisis. However, unlike Venezuela, which is in a similar economic situation, state structures consider bitcoin "outlawed" and do not plan to deal with legislative regulation of the latter. Transactions are not restricted at the moment.


In Jordan, cryptocurrencies are available for settlements, exchange for individuals and small businesses. However, since 2014 the Central Bank of Jordan has banned any transactions with cryptocurrencies for all financial companies of the country. Moreover, the bank notified all citizens of possible risks of investing in cryptocurrencies.


In Iceland, any transactions with cryptocurrencies are allowed. The only exception refers to exchange transactions with cryptocurrencies that are considered illegal in Iceland, provided that such exchange is made from / to foreign currencies. It should be noted that Iceland is one of the leaders of mining industry in the world and it has own cryptocurrency - Auroracoin.


At the moment, there are no restrictions in Kazakhstan regarding turnover of cryptocurrency. However, this situation can change thoroughly and quickly, as, according to Daniyar Akishev, the head of the National Bank of Kazakhstan, he is preparing a set of proposals for regulating turnover of cryptocurrency in the country. Such proposals may prohibit procedures for exchange of national currency for cryptocurrencies and may touch upon a possible ban on activities of some companies that are engaged in mining in Kazakhstan.


Legislative regulation of cryptocurrency market in China was introduced in the autumn of 2017. Currently, cryptocurrencies are regarded  as "virtual commodity" (unreliable digital asset)by the Chinese authorities. Since September 2011, a ban on holding an ICO was introduced and led to a drop in the rate of top 10 cryptocurrencies by more than 15%.
On the other hand, the regulator of China did not prohibit operations of storing and transferring cryptocurrencies between individuals.
It should also be added that the National Internet Finance Association of the People's Republic of China (NIFA) issued a statement in September 2017, noting that: "any trading platform for any kind of so-called “coins” is outside the legal field of China". It led to a temporary stop in operation of China's cryptocurrency exchanges and a fairly strong drop in a rate of the world's main cryptocurrency - bitcoin.
Based on the latest news, it should be noted that advertising of ICO-projects and cryptocurrencies has ceased to appear in the Chinese search system "Baidu" and in specialized social networking platform "Weibo".Further tightening of regulation is expected.


Transactions with cryptocurrencies for individuals are not limited. However, the Financial Superintendence of Colombia does not recognize bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as a means of payment, currencies, or securities. Moreover, the authority does not plan to do it in the future. Companies also can not officially invest in them, store them, dispose of them, etc.


There is almost no legal regulation of cryptocurrencies in Lithuania. Transactions with cryptocurrency are not prohibited for individuals, however, the Central Bank of Lithuania has forbidden banks and financial institutions to work with cryptocurrency.
On the other hand, the regulator issued a special press release in October 2017, which is dedicated to the specifics of organization and holding an ICO in Lithuania. You can find out more in our article of October 30, 2017.


According to the Central Bank of Nigeria, investing in cryptocurrency is a very risky activity and "the bank's obligation is to warn citizens about possible risks." On the other hand, the authorities recognize that no one and nothing can prohibit bitcoin or other crypto-currencies. Transactions with cryptocurrencies are not prohibited for individuals.

United Arab Emirates

The authorities of the UAE began to actively regulate cryptocurrency market in October 2017. A basic guide to cryptocurrency and ICO was issued. Status of cryptocurrency was determined in this document, and a number of requirements for conducting transactions with cryptocurrencies were introduced.
Now virtual currencies (and cryptocurrencies are included in this concept) are regarded as a commodity that is not a specified investment.
Companies that obtain licenses from government agencies in order to carry out their activities and provide / use digital currencies in providing financial services must comply with AML/CFT requirements.
Questions regarding the use of cryptocurrency by individuals and legal entities that did not obtain appropriate licenses remained unregulated

Russian Federation

Recently, position of Russian government regarding regulation of cryptocurrency has changed several times. Initially, the authorities wanted to ban transactions with cryptocurrency and tokens, and after that, interestingly, they thought about creating a cryptoruble. Currently, active drafting of a bill is being carried out, which would have clarified current situation on the market. Earlier, the Bank of Russia and Rosfinmonitoring repeatedly expressed their negative attitude to cryptocurrencies, caused by anonymous character of cryptocurrency and complexity of normative regulation. Officials also note the fact that such currencies are regularly used by intruders to bypass current tax laws and AML / CFT regulations.


Digital currencies in Thailand are not recognized as a means of payment. All cryptocurrency exchanges that operate in the country must conduct trades paired with national currency (baht). On the other hand, situation may change for the better, as Somkid Chatusipitak, Deputy Prime Minister, instructed the Central Bank of Thailand to go deep into the issue of regulating cryptocurrency for modernization of its legal regulation.


Until 2017, the National Bank of Ukraine considered cryptocurrency as a monetary equivalent, which is deprived of real value.
However, in view of growing popularity of cryptocurrencies in the world, a draft was submitted to the Parliament to regulate cryptocurrency market. According to the text of this document, that was published in October 2017 on the official website of the Parliament, legal status of cryptocurrency is equated to the status of property. In case of adoption, the bill will establish basic rules of circulation of cryptocurrency, and also settle some questions concerning taxation of such transactions. Nowadays, transactions with cryptocurrency are not prohibited and are not restricted.


Cryptocurrencies in Estonia are considered as alternative means of payment. However, there are mandatory requirements for identification when performing any transaction with cryptocurrencies.
As for ICO projects, according to the position of the EFSA (Estonian Financial Supervisory Authority), tokens that are issued through ICO should be analyzed and, if they meet certain criteria, can be recognized as financial instruments and be subject to regulation of securities legislation.