Cryptocurrency Regulation Bill: Several news organizations have recently reported that the Center is unlikely to introduce the much-awaited Cryptocurrency Regulation Bill in the upcoming budget session of Parliament. This is because it needs to be discussed further and the government wants to build a consensus on the provisions of the upcoming bill. Reports also suggested that the bill, which initially wanted to ban cryptocurrencies but later intended to regulate them, is not yet fully prepared. The newly proposed rules regarding digital tokens were to be introduced during the winter session of parliament last month.
According to a report in Economic Times, the government is looking forward to the launch of the centrally controlled digital token by the Reserve Bank of India, which is expected to happen in a few months.
“The crypto bill cannot be introduced in the budget session. It is a complex subject. It will require more time,” Economic Times quoted a senior finance ministry official as saying. According to people with knowledge of the matter, the government, though keen to introduce the bill soon, is also interested in holding further discussions with stakeholders before introducing it. Sources told ET that the aim is to strengthen their opinion on the policy.
The finance ministry official also said that the government is waiting for the RBI to provide its inputs after the pilot launch of its digital token. The launch of this token and a legislative regulation on virtual currencies in general would also require amendments to existing laws.
According to a report in ndtv.com, Prime Minister Narendra Modi wants a global discussion on the matter of regulating cryptocurrencies, a point he raised in his World Economic Forum (WEF) address. He had called for a synchronized global action to regulate cryptocurrencies, speaking at the WEF on Monday.
Another reason, ET said in its report, is the lack of consensus regarding the taxation framework for digital currencies, for the delay in introducing the bill. “While the government may give some direction on taxation for investors in crypto assets in the upcoming budget, a complete taxation framework for the cryptocurrency industry is still a work in progress,” ET quoted people familiar with the matter as saying.
“In the upcoming budget, we expect the government to consider levying TDS/TCS on sale and purchase of cryptocurrencies. This could be a turning point for the crypto industry,” experts had previously predicted about the bill.
It still remains to be seen how the government frames the cryptocurrency bill, initially called the Regulation of Cryptocurrency and Official Digital Currency Bill, 2021, which has seen many discussions around it so far.