Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has endorsed blockchain as an „opportunity in frontier technology“, renewing hopes that the country is opening up to cryptomonics.
In a keynote speech at the India Idea Summit, hosted by the US-India Business Council on Wednesday, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi presented the country as a haven for multinational investors.
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Great opportunities regarding blockchain
Part of the speech included support for the chain of blocks as an investment opportunity among these „frontier technologies“.
„Technology opportunities also include opportunities in 5G’s frontier technologies, Big Data Analytics, Quantum computing, Blockchain and Internet of Things,“
Modi added that 500 million people in India have already connected to the Internet and another 500 million are waiting for connection. This presents a great opportunity for companies to expand into a large market, he said.
Unlike China, which remains largely closed to foreign technology companies, India wants to open up. The Prime Minister said that over the past six years, India has made many efforts to make its economy more open and reform-oriented.
Former Indian finance secretary talks to industry experts about banning crypto-currency
Returning to the Prime Minister’s comments, the Indian media, Crypto Kanoon, stressed the importance of clarity in terms of the regulations being put in place.
„China is integrating the state-backed Blockchain network with six public block chains in the world. It is important that we embrace the public blockchains and bring in clear regulation on the whole issue.“
The future of cryptomonies is still unclear
On the surface, India seems to be taking the same path as China, promoting the chain of blocks but still being cautious about cryptomonies. The current situation remains unclear despite the fact that the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) confirmed in May that there were no laws prohibiting banks from offering services to commercial clients related to cryptomoney. This followed the annulment of a ban by the Supreme Court in March.
However, the deepening economic crisis in the country has hampered adoption and banks have been reluctant to open their doors to digital assets. Some banks, such as HDFC and Indusind Bank, have still refused to deal with digital assets.
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At a webinar last week, former Indian Finance Secretary Subhash Chandra Garg discussed the future of cryptology with industry executives. Garg was instrumental in drafting a bill proposing a ban on crypto-currencies, and prison terms for those who hold them.
He said crypto-currencies can be used as regulated commodities, but should not be allowed to function as currencies in India. Industry executives argued that crypto-currency should not be seen as a substitute for the rupee.
India is far from being a world centre for Bitcoin Investor or mass adoption. Getting the banks to join the initiative seems to be the key. Perhaps Prime Minister Modi’s recent endorsement of the blockchain can finally catalyse the central bank into action.