India among top five countries where people own cryptocurrencies

India among top five countries where people own cryptocurrencies
Cross between India and cryptocurrenciesCanva/ BI
  • 30% of surveyed users in India said they own cryptocurrencies.
  • The top five nations — including India — in terms of crypto adoption, are now in Asia.
  • Youngsters, between the ages of 18 to 34, in Tier II and III nations are leading the charge in terms of crypto adoption in the country.
Asian countries are pulling ahead in terms of crypto adoption worldwide. While countries in the region do present a large market in terms of numbers, barring China, most others have been seen as insignificant in the crypto world. However, a new report from research firm Finder says that the top five countries for cryptocurrency ownership are all in Asia.

Vietnam had the largest percentage of crypto ownership at 40%, followed by Indonesia, India, Malaysia and Philippines, respectively. 30% of those surveyed in Indonesia and India said they owned cryptocurrencies, while Malaysia and Philippines had 29% and 28%, respectively.

Meanwhile, the US and the UK had the least number of people who owned crypto, at 8% and 9%, respectively. This is an aberration from general tech trends since the two developed nations usually lead in terms of adoption of new technology worldwide.

The company surveyed a total of 47,000 individuals around the world. “The US currently provides one of the most dynamic markets for cryptocurrencies. On the one hand it provides a progressive market that attracts many start-ups and tech companies, while on the other hand it still lacks regulatory clarity around cryptocurrencies, with multiple companies being retroactively punished for their operations,” the report said.

Youngsters lead the charge


One trend that remains consistent across the world though is that younger users are leading the charge in terms of crypto adoption. The Finders reported that 18 to 34 year olds accounted for over 40% of users around the world.

In addition, 35-44 year olds accounted for 20% of the user base, while 45-54 year olds accounted for 17%. In countries like Colombia and Netherlands, crypto adoption came from the elderly, above the 65-year-old age range.

Smaller towns drive adoption in India

Cryptocurrency adoption in India has been driven by smaller towns of late. The country’s largest crypto exchange by trading volumes, WazirX, recently reported a 2,648% growth in user signups from Tier II and Tier III cities in the country. The exchange has over 7.3 million users and has amassed trading values worth over $21.8 billion in 2021 alone. To be fair, signups from urban centres in India were also growing, with 2,375% growth in user signups from Tier I cities.

India’s crypto industry has been abuzz recently, with the government working on regulations and investors pouring in money into crypto firms. Coinbase backed CoinDCX became the country’s first billion dollar startup in the crypto space last week.

“The cryptocurrency industry is steaming hot. 2021 has seen an accelerated interest in the crypto space as companies look to gain exposure to the market. A number of sectors floundered in FY21, given the challenges of doing business in a pandemic environment. Fintech, for the most part, was not one of them," Sharan Nair, chief business officer of Coinswitch Kuber, another top exchange in the country, told Mint.

Hurdles remains

That said, crypto adoption in these countries doesn’t necessarily mean the industry is out of hot water just yet. Most countries, including India, remain uncertain in terms of regulations. While concerns about an overarching ban have been allayed to some extent, what regulations will come remain unclear.

China, of course, is the leader in terms of crypto adoption but the country has been cracking down on miners for the better part of the year. On the other hand, Vietnam and the Philippines have reportedly been working on crypto-friendly regulations.

For a more in-depth discussion, come on over to Business Insider Cryptosphere — a forum where users can deep dive into all things crypto, engage in interesting discussions and stay ahead of the curve.

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