There is a growing consensus among various stakeholders that cryptocurrencies will play a crucial role in the way we deal with investments in various asset classes. The government, too, is looking to formulate a comprehensive policy on cryptocurrency amid the debate, and the crypto bill is likely to be tabled in the upcoming winter session of Parliament.
True to the hype, 83% of urban Indians are now aware of cryptocurrency and the segment has seen 16% of ownership, according to a study conducted by data analytics firm Kantar. The report said that cryptocurrency ownership is highest in the top four metros — Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata — with 20% of Indians owning cryptocurrency. Private banking customers further constitute a separate 19% and 18% of crypto owners in the age group of 21-35.
It further states that an average investor owns 6.6 products in his/her financial portfolio and the average for crypto owners is 5.5 products. Additionally, 19% of the Indians surveyed in the sample size intend to invest in cryptocurrency in the next six months, and roughly 2 in 10 urban Indians are likely to be crypto investors by the first quarter of 2022. The percentage is still lower when compared with intended investment in mutual funds (49%) and shares (33%) in the next six months.
The Indian cryptocurrency market is expected to reach up to $241 Mn by 2030 in India and $2.3 Bn by 2026, globally. According to a report by NASSCOM, there are 15 Mn retail investors in India investing in the cryptotech space that presently comprises over 230 startups.
Despite the uncertainty around regulations, 15 Mn Indians have invested in cryptocurrencies, signalling strong cryptotech growth in a nation where households are known to invest more frequently in gold and other safer assets.
Globally, there are 120 Mn+ crypto investors in the world, leading the market with over 20% share, are Bitcoin and Ethereum, followed by Ripple, Litecoin, Dash, and Monero.
In India, crypto exchanges like WazirX, Zebpay, CoinSwitch Kuber are most used to purchase the currency for the most popular ones — Bitcoin (70%), Dogecoin (78%) and Ethereum (70%), the report said.
Indian Govt Accepting The Crypto Wave
The Indian Government will come out with a framework to regulate cryptocurrencies by the end of this financial year. Subhash Chandra Garg, Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, said recently. “We hope that within this year, the committee will finalise its recommendations and then it would require legal changes, regulatory assignments, but certainly, there will be regulations by the end of this financial year,” he added.
Last year, after an interdisciplinary committee had submitted its report to the Finance Ministry, requesting a ban over cryptocurrencies, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in Rajya Sabha had informed that the government is further seeking experts’ advice on how to stop the illegitimate trading of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.