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Published November 13, 20223 min read

Are you curious about countries you can't trade bitcoin? If so, here are some of the countries that have illegalized or banned Bitcoin.


Since 2009 when Satoshi Nakamoto introduced Bitcoin, many controversies have surrounded it and the emergence of other cryptocurrencies. While widely criticized for its volatility, use in illicit transactions, and excessive use of electricity to mine it, some, particularly in the developing world, see cryptocurrency as a haven during economic storms.

El Salvador was the first to legalize it in September 2021, followed by the Central African Republic in April of this year. However, as more people turn to cryptos investment as a lifeline, crypto critics have continued to manifest in a slew of restrictions on their use.

While most countries do not make Bitcoin use illegal, its status as a means of payment or a commodity varies, with varying regulatory implications. You can quickly and safely trade Bitcoin through biticodes if you come from a country that doesn't prohibit bitcoin trading. Some countries have restricted the use of Bitcoin, with banks banning their customers from making cryptocurrency transactions. Other countries have outright prohibited the use of Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies, with severe penalties for anyone engaging in crypto transactions. These countries have the most complicated relationships with Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.


Algeria currently prohibits using cryptocurrency following the passage of financial law in 2018, making buying, selling, using, or holding virtual currencies illegal.


Bangladesh's relationship with cryptocurrencies is ambiguous. Officially, there are prohibitions, with cryptocurrency transactions punishable by up to 12 years in prison under the country's terrorist financing and money laundering laws.


There has been an absolute ban on the usage of Bitcoin in Bolivia since 2014. The Bolivian Central Bank issued an order prohibiting it and any other currency not governed by a country or economic zone.


Throughout 2021, China increased its crackdown on cryptocurrencies. Chinese officials have repeatedly warned their citizens to avoid the digital asset market, and they have cracked down hard on mining in the country and currency exchanges in China and abroad.


Banks are not permitted to facilitate Bitcoin transactions in Colombia. In 2014, the Superintendencia Financiera warned financial institutions not to "protect, invest, broker, or manage virtual money operations."


In 2018, Egypt's leading Islamic advisory body, Dar al-Ifta, issued a religious decree labeling Bitcoin transactions as "haram," which prohibited them under Islamic law. While not legally binding, Egypt tightened the banking laws in September 2020 to ban cryptocurrency trading or promotion without a Central Bank license.


The country's central bank issued new regulations on January 1, 2018, prohibiting the use of cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, as a means of payment.


As the Turkish lira fell in value, many people in Turkey turned to cryptocurrency. In April 2021, the Central Bank of Turkey issued a law prohibiting using cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, to directly or indirectly pay for goods and services.


The State Bank of Vietnam has proclaimed that the disbursement, supply, and use of BTC and other cryptos as payment means are illegal and subject to fines. However, the government does not prohibit Bitcoin trading or holding them as assets.


Although cryptocurrency is illegal in Ghana, the country's central bank has expressed interest in blockchain technology and its potential applications. It is investigating how it could integrate Bitcoin into its financial system.


Bitcoin has a complicated relationship with Iran's regime. While the Central Bank forbids trading cryptocurrencies mined in other countries, it has encouraged Bitcoin mining by offering incentives.

Bottom Line

While some countries have completely banned the use and trade of bitcoin, some allow Bitcoin with Certain restrictions. Of importance is reading guidelines in your country and continuing with caution.

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