Back in 2018 when RBI banned crypto-related businesses for banks, the nation had little idea about the opportunity cost of doing so. But, now it seems that the tables have turned, because, like how a truly global leader senses future opportunities, PM Narendra Modi, the most popular Indian Prime Minister has also endorsed Blockchain as the frontier technology to tap future potential in a grand manner. 

The US-India Business Council conducted the India Ideas Summit last Wednesday in which the Prime Minister participated saw him pitching India as the new investment retreat providing a huge market that is still digitally untapped. 

Modi’s speech in the summit talked about how he sees India as one of the frontrunners to garner investments in Blockchains. He also believes that apart from blockchain, 5G, Big data, Quantum computing, and IoT stand at the helm of huge unfolded opportunities. In the speech, he spoke about how half a billion Indians are already digitally connected but another half a billion are yet to be connected. It is a huge market to expand and invest compared to China which keeps its doors shut for Foreign tech companies. 

The PM ascertained that in the last 6 years of his rule, India has taken every important step to keep the economy open to outside investors. It also is making every effort to make it more reformed. 

At the outset, Modi’s confirmation does bring cheer, but similar to China, India’s status on cryptocurrency is still ambiguous. The situation is still unclear despite confirmations from RBI that there are no laws that prevent banks from serving crypto-related businesses. The question is whether the economic crisis is delaying its adoption or whether it is the financial ecosystem in India that is reluctant to open its doors to digital assets. Even now, top private banks like HDFC Bank and IndusInd refuse to deal with it. 

Subhash Chandra Garg, the former finance secretary of India and instrumental in drafting a bill to support the ban believes that cryptocurrencies in India have to be regulated instead of taking over as a currency in India. But supporters believe that it should not be seen as a replacement but rather as a stand-alone investment zone. 

Image Source – KAP Digital