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Indian Crypto Industry Faces Challenges, Seeks Stability

Key Takeaways
  • Regulatory uncertainty and high taxes lead to a 90% business drop for WazirX and Mudrex.
  • WazirX and Mudrex shift to Dubai and the US for friendlier regulations and zero taxes.
  • Industry looks to the Union Budget for clearer regulations and a better environment for Indian crypto.
15-Jan-2024 By: Simran Mishra
Indian Crypto Indust

Upcoming Union Budget Boosts Crypto Industry's Hope in India

In recent years, the Indian cryptocurrency industry has been on a rollercoaster ride, facing ups and downs due to regulatory uncertainties and tax issues. This has resulted in a notable downturn in business for major players such as WazirX and Mudrex. 

However, amidst these challenges, there's a ray of hope. Industry leaders are positive about a favorable policy shift in the upcoming Union Budget. This could potentially bring about some much-needed stability and clarity to the cryptocurrency landscape in India

Crypto Companies Overcoming Obstacles with Strength and Determination

In 2022, the Indian government introduced a 1 percent tax on transferring crypto assets worth more than Rs 50,000. Additionally, they imposed a hefty 30 percent tax on crypto profits. This resulted in a up to 90 percent drop in business for platforms such as WazirX. On the other Mudrex is also facing the consequences these regulation, pushing them to explore opportunities outside India. The unclear regulations and the Reserve Bank of India's careful approach towards cryptocurrencies further added to the challenges faced by the industry.

However, these challenges haven't discouraged the enthusiasm of crypto enthusiasts. WazirX, a platform that gained significant attention in just four years, has strategically shifted some operations to Dubai. This move takes advantage of the favorable regulatory environment and zero-tax policy on cryptocurrency holdings and profits. Similarly, other crypto firms, such as Mudrex, have chosen a similar approach by finding shelter in the US while still maintaining a presence in India. 

Dubai Invites Indian Crypto Businesses with Open Arms

Dubai has become a favored destination for Indian crypto exchanges due to its clear regulations and friendly stance towards cryptocurrencies. The Dubai Virtual Asset Regulatory Authority (VARA) offers a regulatory framework that provides certainty for businesses. Moreover, the UAE's zero-tax policy on crypto holdings and profits has proven to be a major attraction for these exchanges.

Rajagopal Menon, Vice-President of WazirX, highlights Dubai's crypto-friendly approach towards cryptocurrencies, along with its active initiatives to attract talent, companies, and investments, which positions the city as a potential "financial capital of the Middle East."On the flip side, crypto firms in India face challenges as the stable connection between crypto trading accounts and bank accounts is slowed down by the careful approach of banks, influenced by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). Dubai's welcoming approach stands out against the backdrop of these issues in India.

Hopes Pinned on the Union Budget for a Crypto Comeback in India

As the industry faces a temporary slowdown, there's hope among industry players for a positive change in the upcoming Union Budget in February. Rajagopal Menon from WazirX expresses optimism about union budget expectations, saying, "Hope sustains the world, including the crypto world," (Ummeed pe dunya kaayam hai, crypto bhi) echoing the industry's collective hope for positive developments.

Edul Patel, the CEO of Mudrex, agrees that people's views on cryptocurrency investments have grown more sophisticated over time. The industry has shifted from a focus on short-term gains to adopting a long-term holding approach. Patel is positive about the future of crypto in India, highlighting that the main challenge isn't just about paying taxes but also about dealing with the problem of high tax rates.

Positive Support and Community Adoption

The recently established Bharat Web3 Association, which supports cryptocurrency firms in India, is actively communicating with the government amid various challenges. They've expressed worries about how taxes may negatively affect crypto assets and stressed the importance of allowing set-offs on losses. Additionally, they're advocating for clear and well-defined regulations in this regard.

According to the 2023 Global Crypto Adoption Index by Chainalysis, India is emerging as a key player in widespread cryptocurrency adoption. The younger generation, motivated by digital assets and inspired by influential figures such as Elon Musk, is at the leading edge of this cultural change. The Bharat Web3 Association suggests that with appropriate regulations, cryptocurrencies have the potential to positively impact the lives of everyday Indians and boost the development of rural economies.

Crypto's Role in Democracy's Purest Form

Rajagopal Menon highlights the potential of cryptocurrency as a positive force for economic change, emphasizing the importance of proper regulations and understanding. He imagines crypto as a pure form of democracy, capable of financing India's rural economy and bringing about transformative impacts when allowed to flourish within a regulatory framework.


Indian crypto exchanges are facing challenges, but there's optimism for a better future. The upcoming Union Budget could bring a positive policy shift, and combined with active advocacy and growing maturity in cryptocurrency investments, it suggests a positive outlook for the crypto industry in India. Though the journey may be tough, the determination and positive attitude of industry players shows a strong commitment to creating a strong and inclusive crypto ecosystem in the country. 

Also read - BitFinex Successfully Foils Attempted 15B Dollar XRP Cyberattack

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